In a small team, just like in a family, the loss of one member is felt in a huge way. Today, our family mourns the loss of one of our own: Jonah Mngola. Jonah was passionate about the artisanal small scale mining (ASM) community, and as our Open Extractives Program Lead, he spearheaded the process of engaging with and collecting data on ASMs in our focus counties with the aim of building the body of knowledge on ASM while also providing insights to their priorities and challenges. This was in the hope that meaningful and collaborative engagements with other stakeholders in the mining industry in Kenya would lead to better outcomes for ASMs.
Jonah was a hard worker, patient and humble; constantly taking time to listen keenly and understand an issue – whether engaging in long phone calls with miners on the ground or having a team meeting with colleagues.
It was not uncommon to find people at the office excitedly welcoming him when he would come in – partly because he always carried delicious snacks with him, which he was always happy to share – but mostly due to the fact that he was so kind and considerate and would listen and genuinely care about how each person he spoke to was.
To say we have lost a colleague would be an understatement; we have lost a friend and brother.
As we condole with the family and mourn this great loss, we are thankful to have had the time we had with Jonah, as we meditate on this Hebrew Proverb:
“Say not in grief ‘he is no more’ but in thankfulness that he was.”Hebrew Proverb