TV actor and comedian Charles Bukeko popularly knows as "Papa Shirandula" has died in Nairobi.
His brother-in-law Rowland Wanyama, told the Star that the actor collapsed at the Karen Hospital's parking after developing breathing complications.
Rowland said Bukeko was not feeling well after returning to Nairobi on Sunday.
The actor went for a checkup at the Karen Hospital on Monday and thereafter returned home.
He did not show any signs of illness until Saturday morning when he started having breathing complications.
“Papa had travelled from Nairobi. On Sunday he started feeling unwell after returning to Nairobi, so he went for checkups in Karen hospital on Monday." Rowland said.
"He tested positive of corona and he agreed with the doctors that he returns home and have home-based care until today when he developed breathing complications.”
Following his death, Royal Media Services sent a message of condolences to Bukeko's family through MD Wachira Waruru.
Waruru said he received the news of his passing with shock and disbelief.
"Bukeko, who was known to many simply as Papa Shirandula, was a towering thespian who was loved in every corner of the country. He endeared himself to TV audiences with his natural sense of humour and effortless depiction of typical Kenyan lifestyles," he said.
The MD said Papa was fondly known within the Royal Media fraternity, represented a pioneering group of Kenyan actors who immensely contributed to the growth and success of local productions.
"I am honoured to have worked closely with Bukeko in the creation of the Papa Shirandula series that immediately gained wide acceptance across the country. His passing is therefore, a big loss not only to the Royal media family and Kenya's acting fraternity but also to the country as a whole," he said.
"His legacy and contribution to Kenya's TV industry will continue to impact many generations to come. Papa was an award-winning Kenyan actor, thespian, singer, and director."
Bukeko rose to fame when he was cast to play the role of Papa Shirandula in the popular TV series Papa Shirandula which aired on Citizen TV.
It is this show that made him a household name in Kenya.
Since then, he has appeared in several other TV shows such as The Captain of Nakara (2012).
He has also appeared in numerous big-time commercials across the world including Coca Cola and GoTV.
He has left behind a wife and three children. Two boys and one girl. The eldest is aged 14 years.