Soni Methu, a prominent Kenyan journalist and former host of CNN’s Inside Africa, has died after collapsing with stomach pains. She was 34 years old.
Methu was staying at a hotel in Diani, Kwale county, Kenya, on Thursday when she lost consciousness and died. Her younger sister, Faith, said it appeared Soni experienced a seizure.
Faith Methu described in a statement to the media the moment her older sister clutched her stomach in pain and fell to the floor at around 6pm, according to the Daily Nation.
Her sister-in-law rushed her to a hospital but she was pronounced dead on arrival. ‘Her feet were cold and lips were dark,’ a family member who witnessed the medical emergency told the Kenyan news outlet The Star.
Faith Methu said an autopsy will be performed to determine Soni’s cause of death, reported CNN. Methu hosted the show Inside African on CNN International between 2014 and 2015, when the program switched to a new format without a presenter.
As part of the show, Methu traveled to different countries on the African continent and highlighted their cultures and cuisines.
‘We are shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of our friend and former colleague Soni Methu,’ CNN said in a statement. ‘Our heartfelt condolences to her family and friends, from all at CNN.’
At the time of her death, Methu worked as a reporter for the Chinese-owned news network CGTN, which hired her in 2016 following her departure from CNN.
Earlier in her career, Methu, who graduated from Nairobi’s Strathmore University, was a reporter for E News Africa and for the South African News network eNCA.
‘I am blessed to have toured across Africa,’ Methu wrote of herself on Facebook. ‘I embrace the beauty of our continent. A beautiful people with multiple cultures.’