If you are on any social media platform in Kenya, you probably have interacted with a Papa Shirandula – God rest his soul – look-alike flexing to “Cough” by Kizz Daniel dressed in what looks like a Chief’s uniform.
Fredrick Wamalwa or Chief Wamalwa – as many Kenyans know him – has been the talk of the town ever since Kenyans discovered his Tiktok account and started sharing his dancing videos.
However, if you watched Bahati’s hit song Story Yangu featuring Denno, you must have seen Chief Wamalwa as he was the one leading Council askaris arresting hawkers in the video.
In addition to that, his TikTok has over 20.5K followers and over 37 videos with one of the videos having over 300k views.
Chif Wamalwa featuring in Bahati and Denno’s song Story Yangu.
Kenyans.co.ke has traced the father of two to find out if he is really a chief, his station, and what inspires his dancing moves on Tiktok.
While Chief Wamalwa may not be an administrative officer within the Ministry of Interior, at least in real life, he has quite an amazing story and is “the next big thing in the entertainment industry” as MC Jessy puts it.
An elder at Winners Chapel – Adams Arcade, Wamalwa has worked with entertainment bigwigs including comedians MC Jessy and Dr. Ofweneke, musicians Bahati and Denno; and even the late Charles Bukeko aka Papa Shirandula.
“I started out at Winners Chapel where I used to act with the likes of MC Jessy (Jasper Muthomi) and Dr. Ofweneke (Sande Bush) before they went to Churchill,” Wamalwa who says he is just about 60 years old casually revealed to Kenyans.co.ke.
When asked whether he is the late Charles Bukeko’s (Papa Shirandula) brother considering the striking resemblance, Wamalwa says he is not related to Shirandula except that he once appeared on the hit Citizen TV show while Bukeko was still alive.
“When I joined Papa Shirandula, I wanted to be his colleague as a Watchman but I was cast as a chief,” Wamalwa reminiscences adding that it was then that he adopted the name Chief Wamalwa as his stage name.
This was also an undoing for Chief Wamalwa as he could not reprise Charles Bukeko’s role on Papa Shirandula following the death of the veteran actor.
“We had behind-the-scenes discussions with the show producers on the possibility but we saw it was not possible,” he reveals.
MC Jessy had nothing but praise for Chief Wamalwa whom he remembered acting together at Winners Chapel in a play where Wamalwa was cast as MC Jessy’s mother-in-law.
“Wamalwa is a talented actor. He could fit in any role, including that of a woman,” MC Jessy quipped adding that Wamalwa has the potential of being bigger than Papa Shirandula.
“We wanted to bring him to Churchill Show but it was a bit difficult because he is an actor, not a standup comedian,” Jessy revealed to Kenyans.co.ke.
According to the popular comedian, this is the time for Chief Wamalwa and he is happy that Kenyans are slowly but surely recognizing his talent after a long time in the shadows.
“I can’t wait for him to start enjoying the fruits of his labour. I would vouch for his talent anywhere,” MC Jessy concluded.