Lady Who Greeted Ruto With Left-Hand Admits Overlooking Impairment Changed Her Life

Brightstar Kasyoka's name was on the lips of many recently after revealing online that she met Deputy President William Ruto and greeted him with her left hand

Lady Who Greeted Ruto With Left-Hand Admits Overlooking Impairment Changed Her Life

– Brightstar Kasyoka's name was on the lips of many recently after revealing online that she met Deputy President William Ruto and greeted him with her left hand

– She told  that having one impaired hand, she spent years trying to fit into a society that believes greetings should be with the right hand

– The fashion designer also disclosed that the problems pushed her mind to hunger for success as a way of dealing with the impairment

Brightstar Kasyoka rose from a difficult childhood into a beacon of hope and embodiment of success for many.

Brightstar Kayoka has over time learned to accept her

impairment and channelled her energy into business success.

Raised by her grandparents, Brightstar's biggest stumbling block growing up was a physical impairment on one of her hands, something that made her feel different, but not forever.

She was recently the talk of the town after greeting Vice President William Ruto with her left hand .

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In a phone interview with  's Hillary Lisimba,

Brightstar revealed that as much as she was a bright student

who gained respect among peers, she started fighting the demon of being abled differently at a young age.

"Some kids called me 'Kaloko' which means small hand, but that never got into me then, although I must admit healing from their words became harder during my teenage years," she expressed.

As it turned out, what was meant to put her down became the catapult that would launch her on an upward trajectory.

To begin with, she became a loner who sunk her nose into books and soon discovered that she not only had a gift in poetry but was also an eloquent public speaker.

It is during these forlorn moments that she filled another void in her heart by writing letters to her father whom she had never met.

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"My first shairi (Swahili poem) was published in the Taifa Leo newspaper while I was in class 8. I might have been a sad child but it worked for good because right now I can write and speak so well," she continued.

With her confidence high up, Brightstar chose to run for office

when she joined university, but once again questions arose

over why she greeted people with the left hand.

This can be attributed to the fact that our African upbringing

has taught many to view greetings with the left hand as a sign of disrespect.

That made the young girl from Mwingi District in Kitui County

resort to hiding her hands to avoid stares and questions.

"Some people would just ask innocently what happened

and I would break down and cry. I would wear long sleeves and carry sweaters to conceal it which only led to more questions," said Brightstar.

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Lady Who Greeted Ruto With Left-Hand Discloses Overlooking

Impairment Changed Her Life Mindset Shift

However, with time I have accepted myself and I answer them

that it was an accident and no longer feel the need to hide it.

I think having prominent people like Barrack Obama and Uhuru

Kenyatta made me not get so much affected by using my left


"My grandfather believed since I was a child that I would be

a president so it gave me so much confidence that being

left-handed was an automatic ticket to success.

Brightstar looks back and admits it was good that she saw it

that way otherwise she would have always wished to be right-


She also adds that what many thought would work against her

has become the reason she thinks and works differently.

"I dealt with my hand by being successful. Other than

being position one in school and winning awards, I

participated in so many leadership projects. I always

believed if I worked hard no one would see my hand, and it

has worked magic for me," she intimated.

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That, she adds, has made the world embrace her as they see

her strengths beyond the impairment.

On Meeting the Vice President

Brightstar revealed that she started looking for an

appointment with the second in commands in 2020 for

purposes of business.

She admitted that, like many other entrepreneurs, her business

was collapsing due to COVID-19 and she hoped to pitch a

business plan to him.

"I tried reaching several leaders in the search for help as I

was becoming a role model in the society and couldn't

afford to close my business. None of them picked my calls

or responded to my texts, so I gave up," she remembered.

The chance would finally come this year when a friend invited

her to join a movement for the Deputy President.

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She had been initially reluctant given the failed attempts that

still hurt her, but gave in half-heartedly.

"When we visited the DP, I was still not sure of him but

then when I told him I am left-handed and he gave me his

left hand instead of asking questions, I was so impressed,"

said an elated Brightstar.

That was a moment that not only changed her perspective but

also gave her the much-needed jolt to overlook the little doubts she had left in her push even harder.

Felix Mose

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