The late Professor Nyasani Joseph during an interview on April 6, 2014. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP
A section of leaders Sunday mourned Prof Joseph Nyasani, describing him as a distinguished scholar.
Led by Kisii Governor James Ongwae and his deputy Joash Maangi, the leaders said the country had lost a great leader. Prof Nyasani died last week on Thursday.
“I knew Prof Nyasani as a distinguished professor of international repute, an academician in the field of philosophy who has served the country and the world at large in various capacities,” Mr Ongwae said in a statement.
“As a community we have lost a great scholar, philosopher, broadcaster, mentor and leader, whose contribution will be greatly missed,” he said.
His nephew and Kitutu Central MCA Pius Abuki said the death of the Nairobi University don was a major blow to their family.
“Professor Nyasani took me under his wings and encouraged me to continue with my studies. I owe my current success to his patience, persistence and fatherly counsel that sustained me through my schooling years,” the MCA said.
“He was a father, mentor, leader, role model and indispensable family pillar,” Mr Abuki said.
He said Prof Nyasani had been ailing for a long time, suffering from liver, kidney, and heart complications.
According to his Curriculum Vitae posted on the University of Nairobi website, the scholar was born in 1936 in Kisii County.
It is said that he wanted to become a Catholic priest but changed career paths to pursue academics. He was fluent in several languages including English, French, Italian, Spanish, Latin, Kiswahili and Ekegusii — his mother tongue.
The deceased will be remembered for breaking a 300-year record by writing his dissertation in Latin while doing his doctorate in Germany in 1963.
He had 41 titles to his name and authored several books in philosophy especially metaphysics, logic, cosmology and legal Philosophy.
Prof Nyasani was once described as Nairobi’s most loyal bar patron. For 25 years, he remained faithful not only to his glass of wine, but also to one bar in Nairobi West.
Not even a bullet through his eye could stop him from going to the West End Bar and Butchery in Nairobi West, a pub he patronised every day.
He is survived by eight children living and working in several countries including Germany, UK, US and Kenya.