Interesting facts about Jeff Koinange

Away from being the grandson of the senior colonial chief, Jeff Koinange is also a nephew of Kenya’s independence cabinet minister Mbiyu Koinange.

Little known facts about Jeff Koinange
Little known facts about Jeff Koinange [Photo/ Courtesy]

In Brief

  • Jeff Koinange is a renowned household name in the Kenyan media industry.
  • His real name is Geoffrey Mwaura Koinange.
  • Jeff has previously worked for a vast of international media outlets before jetting back home in 2007

Jeff Koinange Biography

Born on January 7th, 1966 as Geoffrey Mwaura to parents Fredrick Mbiyu Koinange and Hilda Wambui Ngoima, the celebrated TV presenter, talk show host, and newscaster is viewed by many as an individual who was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He is a first grandson of the legendary Senior Chief Koinange wa Mbiyu after whom the infamous Koinange street in Nairobi’s CBD is named. Jeff’s paternal grandmother was the third of the six wives married by the famous chief.

Away from being the grandson of the senior colonial chief, Jeff Koinange is also a nephew of Kenya’s independence cabinet minister Mbiyu Koinange. Mbiyu was the first-ever Kenyan to acquire a Master’s degree.

Jeff Koinange education

Jeff Koinange attended St Mary’s for his High School before proceeding to Kingsborough Community College in New York where he obtained an Associate’s degree in 1989. He thereafter joined New York University courtesy of a scholarship where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Broadcast Journalism.

Jeff Koinange career journey

Jeff worked with both ABC and NBC soon after clearing his undergraduate program at New York University. He worked with ABC for a record 10 years from 1991 to 2001 while he was at NBC briefly in 1994.

He joined Reuters from 1995 to 2001 as a part time correspondent. In the same 1995, KTN in Kenya had just opened shop and Jeff was hired as a part time news anchor. Jeff was also appointed as the Reuters West Africa Bureau Chief in 1998, based in Ivory Coast but later relocated to Johannesburg.

Jeff Koinange hit international airwaves after he joined CNN as an African correspondent and West Africa Bureau Chief. At the time, he brought West Africa to the attention of the world through his stories.

Some of the notable strides during his short stint at CNN was his coverage of the Dafur crisis, Sierra Leone and Liberia Civil wars as well as the famine in Niger. He left CNN in 2007.

Jeff Koinange family and marriage

Jeff Koinange married his first wife, Sonya, a Panamanian woman, in 1988. The two however went their different ways by way of divorce after Jeff busted her in bed with another man.

He later tied the knot with Shaila Koinange and the couple is blessed with a son, Jamal Mbiyu Koinange.

Little known facts about Jeff Koinange

  1. Jeff Koinange grew up wanting to become an agricultural economist.
  2. He attended the same High School with President Uhuru Kenyatta (St Mary’s School)
  3. He worked for Panama Airlines as part of the cabin crew before joining college in the US.
  4. He divorced his first wife on infidelity grounds after four years of marriage.
  5. He smokes a Cuban cigar twice a day.
  6. He was the first-ever African to win an Emmy award. This happened while he worked with CNN.
  7. Jeff Koinange and wife struggled to have a baby for a record 9 years.
  8. Away from broadcast journalism, Jeff Koinange is a renowned author.



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