A viral video by Betty Kyalo ranting about her job and taking on her critics has been the talk of town since Saturday when she released it on Instagram. In the video, the K24 weekend news presenter, a celebrity loved and hated in equal measure, is visibly drunk and spews epithets.
She particularly takes on those who think she is not good enough; those who say she ain’t a role model for Kenyan girls or anyone but herself. In the video, she uses the F*** word several times, evidence of her seething reservations about the self-made moral policemen and women of social media and the blogosphere.
Meet Betty the mum
Listen to her, “I don’t care because I do my best and work so hard,” she says in the video. “I am a mum, not yet a wife but hopefully soon. I’m also a businesswoman so for anybody who’s gonna hate on this video and say Betty Kyallo spotted drunk, f**k you!”
Well, her critics responded in kind, too, and fell short of telling her to f**k off as well. Would you blame her revenge on the critics?
Business Today has covered Betty Kyalo extensively, while she was at KTN and her leaving to K24. It’s been both positive and negative coverage, yet we have always left the public to judge her.
In her talk, she brings out something unbecoming about Kenyans: the “bring him/her down syndrome”. A big section of Kenyans crave success, but they immediately hate it when that success manifests in someone else.
Betty has defied odds to rise to the top of TV broadcast in Kenya. She has become a strong brand and audience magnet of sorts. K24 is said to have paid a good price to get her to leave KTN.
Betty captures the Kenyan nature so well. This time, she spoke for many people. “Many times people wanna bring you down. Whoever is watching right now, I came from work, did my show…f**k everybody out there who thinks that Betty is not good enough,” she said.
Betty is human like any of us. She makes mistakes and goofs, just like any soul from her village in Ukambani would. She’s free to drink, vent, fight or even pee on the roadside. Many of us do that every day.
We understand she’s a public figure and that comes with some level of care on what to do and/or say. Yet at the same time, those critics of Betty and other high-ranking members of this society should first look nicely at themselves in the mirror. Kenyans have this annoying holy-than-thou attitude, which is an irony as these ‘holy’ people have lots of skeletons under their closets.
They will criticize public figures on corruption then go back to steal from their husbands and wives and other relatives; sleep with their friends’ wives and husbands; and even demand bribes to do things they are supposed to do.
Activist Boniface Mwangi summed it up nicely. “Betty Kyalo owes no one an apology for having a good time and enjoying her life. Stop projecting your hypocrisy on someone who owes you nothing. Use that idle energy to ask our government and elected leaders what they’re doing to ensure we don’t starve or die because of Corona.”
Back to Betty’s explosion. It was a matter of time because a person can contain such pressure only for so long. Every human being has an elastic limit. Betty Kyalo has had her own fair share of drama and extreme public scrutiny. Maybe she just got to her limit. Hope Betty feels better.
Her boldness on the matter is commendable. Now she’s taken the bull by the horns and should sustain that momentum. That’s how Akothee silenced her critics. Betty can do it as well.
For those who missed some of the video here is a transcription of the juicy bit:
“My family is very protective over me and they are like Betty why are you going live right now… I’ve had a drink and people are saying you cannot have this much fun coz wewe ni role model f*ck that shit, me I take care of my child, Ivanna, I’m her role model. Eti you are my daughter’s role model so don’t go to the club, I wanna go the club, I wanna have a good time, the pressure in this f**king career is horrible and this chiq is saying end the video because I’m saying the truth I’m not gonna end this video whatever the blogs are gonna say about Betty or Betty Kyallo … f**k off f**k off bloggers,” says Betty in the video.