Songstress Achieng Abura Passes on
Popular songstress Achieng Abura passed away on 20th October 2016, this was when Kenyans were marking Mashujaa day. Born Lydia Achieng Abura she was a well-established songwriter, pianist and a recording artist. She started her musical journey in the early 90,s with a gospel album titled “I Believe”. She has been doing music for over 25 years, well known to produce Afro-Jazz and Afro-fusion. She was also part of the Divas of Nile group that featured Mercy Myra, Suzzana Owiyo and Princess Jully. The group performed at the Mundial Festival in Netherlands in 2007.
In 2013 when the country was celebrating 50 years of self-rule, she was among the artist celebrated as well in that she was also turning 50. Achieng has a Master of Philosophy in Environmental Studies and a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering. Her strong advocacy for social transformation saw her named as a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) as well as the World Wildlife Fund.
In 2004 she won the Kora All Africa Music Awards for Best Female Artiste East Africa. She was also honored by retired President Mwai Kibaki in 2004 with the Order of the Grand Warrior (OGW) for her contribution to the arts and culture in Kenya. In 2012 she was recognized by the Jordan Foundation in USA for her contribution to social change and development through her music in Kenya. In 2008 she served as the principal at the Tusker Project Fame Academy.
Musically she drew her inspiration from the likes of Miriam Makeba, Salif Keita and her call to Kenyan musicians was to produce more quality music.
She is rumored to have suffered depression and her Facebook posts indicated that all was not well. On 13th October she was admitted at Kenyatta National Hospital where she passed on, later on. Until her death she was the good will ambassador of UNDP. She is survived by one son, 23 year old Prince Abura.
She performed in many countries, including England, Germany, Netherlands, France, Spain, USA and South Africa among many others.