Kate Actress apologises over insensitive comments, joins Finance Bill protests

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Kenyan actress Catherine Kamau. (Courtesy)

Kenyan actress Catherine Kamau, known popularly as Kate Actress, has apologised after facing backlash for insensitive remarks on social media.

The controversy stemmed from her involvement in President William Ruto's state visit to the United States in May.

Kate was part of a delegation that attended a luncheon at Tyler Perry Studios in honor of the President's visit.

Reports surfaced that the trip, involving at least 30 people, had cost Kenyan taxpayers a staggering Sh250 million in travel expenses.

This sparked public outrage, with many questioning the justification for such a hefty price tag.

Adding fuel to the fire, Kate was criticised for not being transparent about who funded her trip.

Some fans called her out for potentially using taxpayer money, especially since she remained silent on the matter initially.

When questioned directly, Kate responded defensively on her Instagram page.

"Your thinking is so limited," she wrote. "Some of us don't need government money to thrive. This trip is completely self-funded. This is me investing in my brand and taking care of my business. Get it?"

Her response did not sit well with some fans who perceived it as dismissive and out of touch with the economic struggles facing many Kenyans. The comment, seen as insensitive, led to a wave of criticism.

However, Kate eventually issued an apology, acknowledging that her initial response was a mistake.

"I want to sincerely apologise for the insensitive comment I made on my Instagram page," she wrote.

She clarified that the trip was not funded by the Kenyan government but facilitated by an invitation from the US Ambassador to Kenya.

"After much reflection, I realize it was a reflex response to the false allegations," she continued. "I reiterate that it wasn't [government-funded]. However, I acknowledge that I should have responded in a more respectful way."

Kate's apology came amidst a wider conversation about the role of celebrities in Kenyan society, particularly the Finance Bill 2024.

On Wednesday, content creator Milly wa Jesus also apologised for missing in action on the protest.

Milly, who has a large following on social media, addressed her absence from the protests in an Instagram post.

"Let me begin by stating that I #rejectthefinancebill2024," she wrote. “I’ve spent the morning catching up on yesterday’s events and want to clarify my stand. I understand we let our audience down by not engaging in the conversation promptly, particularly yesterday, and I apologize for that.”

She explained they had been away since Friday but vowed to continue raising awareness about the bill.

“We’ve been away since Friday. Therefore despite the delay, I refuse to ignore the issue or remain silent due to guilt, condemnation, or pressure. I commend everyone who participated in the march and those who used their platforms and voice to educate, support and encourage. We are all in this together! We have until Thursday, so let’s continue our efforts to reject the finance bill,” she concluded.

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