It has been two years and Malaika Nnyanzi’s time at KFM is in its twilight. The D’Mighty Breakfast co-presenter will be at the mic at KFM for the last time today. Looking back, one can hardly believe it has been two years already.
Her first meeting with Joseph Beyanga the Head of radio programming at Monitor Publications Ltd, and Ben Mwine the former presenter of the show did not suggest that they needed her to fill a slot.
“I was still at Urban TV and throughout our chat, I found them very welcoming, never treating me like a visitor.”
Reminiscing about her first encounter with Mr B as she fondly calls Beyanga, Malaika says, “I felt like my leg was being pulled. He was too cool for a boss, never ever making me feel like I needed to prove a point. That really helped because I was really feeling nervous.”
It was only three months later that she got a call for a voice test which was indeed a surprise, “This time, I met Brian Mulondo who in my mind was so serious and professional.”
Coming from a show where Gaetano Kaggwa was her co-presenter, she was not sure how they would blend, “On the other hand, he also saw me as a proud person. But in that meeting, he cracked my ribs and it was amazing. I was certain, we were meant to be.”
Although the bond had been established, the former TV presenter was oblivious to what radio held and was extremely freaked out. “Conversely, from April 4, 2017, every single day has been amazing, utter bliss.”
But nothing beats the show prep – preparations done for the next day’s show. “I don’t think anyone did it the way we did. We blazed music, laughed, and jumped only for the real work to get done in the last few minutes. But from all the fun came the moments that would later make the show come alive.”
Raw with emotion that cannot be mistaken, Malaika talks of the show and the listeners with appreciation: “It is so humbling because my brand, Malaika has grown at KFM. Every listener like the early bird crew were awesome. Every single caller had something to bring to the table. The fact that they loaded airtime and chose to call was wonderful.”
With various persons interviewed on the show, Malaika still recalls the interview with Bobi Wine like it was yesterday, “He had just won the parliamentary elections yet still agreed to come to the show, that was awesome. He gave us both worlds of his life, which was so cool. That aside, he was articulate yet fun as he danced with us without restraint. I had watched him before he came into the studio and the way he interacted with people cemented the fact that he was really a people person.”
There was also the interview with Irene Ntale Unchained, “It was so interesting as she was relatable and not scared of opening up about who she was and her experiences.”
Malaika also remembers the interview with Dian Kahunde with passion, “That girl was amazing, open, honest and not afraid to share. She believed that her experience could help someone out there and never held back despite there being a possibility that someone could skew it against her.”
These two years have not been without lessons for the personality that graced the airwaves with such beauty. Life is what you make it, she says she has learned. “This job could have been so difficult but even when the show did not go as planned, we chose to look at the bright side of it all. Many things have happened before or while on air but I have still smiled through the show. That has also taught me to compartmentalise so that I never bring personal issues on air.”
Like fine wine, that gets better with time, Malaika’s view of people also changed “Everyone has their journey so I have learned to respect them.” She has also learned how tough she can be, “There have been times on the job that have brought out a tough side of me I did not think existed. I have come to appreciate myself more knowing that if all I can change is one person, it is good enough.”
Despite all the fun, there have been dark days. “When I lost Viola, my youngest sister, it was tough but I had to come to work. But the support system from Brian and Mr B helped me pull through so well. There were times Brian allowed me to take a breather or Mr B allowed me a day off. All these helped immensely.”
Another hiccup that Malaika has lived with was waking up early. “Despite hosting an early show for so long, this is one thing I don’t think I will ever get accustomed to.”
As she winds up her time at the radio station, one of her biggest lessons has been to value friendship. A lot. She has also learned to work for her.
“When you don’t work to please someone, then you work because it is beautiful. Even when no one appreciates you or when one tries to pull you down, you move on and are certain that instead of you, they, will fall.”
Sqoop wishes her all the best in her next endeavours!