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A one on one with Benson Ojuwa — Kina

28 January 2021
Benson plays hardcore criminal Rhino on Kina.
Ben teke, Rhino, kina

If there’s one person Nana wants dead right now, it’s Rhino! After escaping from prison for a second time and going on the run, he showed up unannounced at a gold auction organised by Kina Waters. In the middle of the bidding process, Rhino blasted in, guns blazing, stole gold worth millions and escaped. The gold had not been insured, which left Nana at the mercy of Prince Al Fayad who is ready to take over Kina Waters.

So just who is the man behind the character Rhino? We sat down with him for a one-on-one recently and this is what he shared with us.

Who is Benson and how did you get into acting?

My name is Benson Ojuwa, popularly known as “Ben Teke” a name I was given while playing football in my youth because I kind of resembled Crystal Palace striker Christian Benteke. I went to school at Madaraka Primary School, left for St. Anthony's in Kitale for my O Level, then completed at Munami High School. I later joined Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology where I did a Diploma in Business Management.

I started acting seven years ago through a friend Elton Mwambi and over the years I've risen through the ranks to where I am today. I have been privileged to work on different projects namely, Njoro wa Uba where I play Njoro's lawyer and La Msingi where I played Osumba, I've appeared on Jela 5 Star, Nganya and will soon be making my debut on Varshita. I've also performed in a number of stage plays over the years. My most memorable ones would be Minister Karibu by John Sibi Okumu, where I had the privilege to share the stage with my director Victor Gatonye. The other two are Necessary Madness by Walter Sitati and The Dying Need No Shoes by Dr. Fred Mbogo, which I did with Nice Githinji. I believe the stage has played a big role in shaping my diversity in art.

Tell us about your role on Kina. What has it taught you and what do you enjoy most about it?

I play Rhino, one of the hardcore criminals on the series. What this character has taught me about myself is, it's not always about me and I don't have to be selfish. Most of the blunders Rhino makes are because of his selfishness. My most enjoyable memories on set are when I executed the heists. Being around my gang is fun too. One of the challenges I faced was moving from Odanga Esq, the character I play on Njoro wa Uba, to Rhino. It took many people some time to realise I was playing both roles. Offset, I've struggled to convince people that I'm not a criminal and that I have both eyes. Secondly, I can't eat in public, I recently had a scenario where I was enjoying some viazi karai with a friend and I heard people shouting "kumbe ni tabia yake" in reference to Odanga Esq who is always eating.

Who’s your favourite character on the show and what has been your greatest achievement?

My favourite characters are Redempta, Trish and Detective Juma. I enjoy watching them on television. My greatest achievement is when I got nominated in the ‘Best Supporting Actor’ category at the 2018 Kalasha Awards. Although I didn’t win, it motivated me to keep going. One day it will be mine!

Please share with us 5 things our audience doesn’t know about you.

  • I love listening to loud music
  • I'm a good storyteller
  • I am shy
  • I am emotional
  • I am a good footballer

How will things turn out for Rhino? Be sure to watch the drama unfold on Kina every Monday to Friday only on Maisha Magic Plus DStv CH 163.