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Dad infected mum with HIV - Former Tahidi High actress on growing up in violent home

I still struggle with what my dad took us through - Makena.

Christine Njeri ‘Makena’ (Instagram)

You may recognize Christine Njeri from the Tahidi High show where she played the role of ‘Makena’ or as the producer and director of top youth show ‘Teen Republik’.

Others know her as a producer at BBC but behind that calm demeanour is a horrific childhood that forced her to grow up fast and at 18, run away from home.

Christine’s father struggled with alcoholism and often became physically abusive towards her mother to a point that Makena had to share a bed with her mother to protect her from her father’s blows.

In addition, the dad cheated on their mother and infected her with HIV.


“My dad started cheating a lot I would bump into him in town with different women,” Christine Njeri told Grace Msalame on her show Unscripted with Grace.

Her mum went into severe depression causing a nervous breakdown.

“She went into severe depression and she got a nervous breakdown. So those are the things up to date I still think about, she didn’t have to go through that. After she healed and was back home, she would take medicine and say it was for the nervous breakdown. That’s what we knew,” Christine confessed.

But as she soon found out, the medicine was not for her nervous breakdown.


“One day she told me to please clean her room and as I was cleaning I bumped into the medicine she used to take and I decided to pick the leaflet so that at night I can read about this medication and what it’s doing to her. After dinner, I went into my room and opened the leaflet and started reading and the first line crushed me. These are antiretroviral drugs. At that moment my whole life came to a standstill because at that point I thought she is dying,” an emotional Christine revealed.

Parents pass on

“I still struggle with what my dad took us through,” Christine admitted.

And when her mum passed on in 2013 she broke down and felt that it was unfair since the dad was the one who infected her mother. As it turns out the father was a carrier. When they laid their mum to rest, she refused to talk to her father until two years later when he was at his death bed.


She finally went to see her dad at his death bed after being convinced by her brother to see her dad before he passed on.

“I went back to see my dad, he couldn’t talk he was very sick and I told him ‘Daddy I forgive you’. I forgive you for everything you took us through. I set you free,” she revealed.

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