From a Garbage Collector to a Billionaire: The Story of Jimmy Wanjigi, one of Kenya’s richest Businessman

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Popularly known as James Bond by his close friends, Jimmy Wanjigi is a Kenyan political strategist, a silent kingmaker and a hardworking entrepreneur who rose from a garbage collector to become one of the richest man in Kenya.

Jimmy Wanjigi was born on September 1st, 1962,  to a former  member of parliament and a former cabinet minister, Maina Wanjigi. As a politician, Jimmy grew up around a political environment and was able to learn and understand the intricacies of politics early in life; this helped him to become one of the silent kingmaker in Kenya; scheming, calculating and assisting politicians to climb up the political ladder. Jimmy has been a close political ally of Ralia Odinga since 2017 supporting Ralia’s campaign in resource mobilization, coordination and mediation where necessary.

Jimmy attended Woodley Nursery school and was a student of St Mary’s College where he had studied with the current Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and Gideon Moi. He later joined Yolk University to study enterprise and graduated in 1986. Years later he returned to Kenya and joined Daystar University to pursue professional enterprise.

His first business was garbage collection which he started while in college. Wanjigi claims that he pioneered private garbage collection during the 1990s when Arap Moi was the President. According to him, he saw that garbage collection was not given the necessary attention in many towns, so he took advantage of the opportunity and solve the problem which brought him lots of money later in life.

When he began the business of garbage collection Jimmy did not have money to purchase trucks for the business; because of this, he sought permission after a lot of challenges due to government laws at that time to collect garbage using plastic bags which were difficult to recycle.

Since Jimmy could not afford to own a pick-up truck, he collaborated with his friend from high school and together they raised funds and buy two pick-up trucks within two years. The two tucks helped the business to grow at a faster rate.

Due to his political inclination at a very young age, Wanjigi  negotiated his way into the political scene and secured some government’s contracts in Kenya on garbage collection.

Jimi Wanjigi’s career has been smooth and it has been in upward- rising manner. This is mostly attributed to his circle of friends who have always been very supportive. He has worked for many companies including being a consultant, agent, and also working in accounts. Currently, he is the chief executive officer of Kwacha Group of companies. This company is a holding firm for all his businesses; with keen interests in financial services, agri-business; real estate. etc.,

Jimmy Wanjigi is also faced with challenges like people having the wrong idea about him since he was raised in a political life background. And he recently declared his intention to contest for Kenyan Presidency in 2022

Some quotes of Jimmy Wanjigi

1. To solve the problems we have as Kenyans, we must be willing to be part of the solution. That begins with voting out all politicians who have been part of those problem

2. As a businessman, my only hope is to make this country better for everyone. A good economy benefits everyone, not just the elite. That is why we are fighting for economic liberation

3.  I am willing to take up the challenge of changing the trajectory of the Kenyan economy. Kenyan deserve to be economically independent and i believe it can be done in our lifetime

4. I’ll be running for the ODM ticket and I’ll be taking on Ralia Odinga and that will be my presidential ticket. As an ODM life member, I have what it takes to lead the party and the country into the future

5. After the 2013 elections, it is in my home where Baba (Raila Odinga), and the President came to and shook hands after the Supreme Court decision.

6. Raila is my great friend. I will run against him to show Kenyans how democracy works in this country. We will compete and make sure the election is free and fair

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