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‘Tibim’ and Babu Owino top on Google Search

‘Tibim’ and Babu Owino top on Google Search

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Embakasi East MP Babu Owino

Google has released top trending searches for the week that closed the month of September (September 24 to 8AM Sunday, October 1, 2017).

Top on the list was Embakasi East MP, Paul Ongili famously known as Babu Owino – who had earlier in the week been arrested and rearrested on accounts of subversion, thereby sparking protests by University of Nairobi Students.

The word ‘subversion’ became sixth among the top trending searches. However, Football came in second, with EPL matches of Arsenal Vs West Brom and Chelsea Vs Man City becoming the most searched games of the week.

The week also saw Kenyans take to Google to find out the meaning of the word “tibim” which was the fourth trending item. Coined by the former SONU Chairman, the word  “tibim” has received a lot of traction and could possibly be one of the most used phrases during this electioneering period. Mr. Owino has previously stated that the word holds a revolutionary meaning in the Greek language.

Trending at No.5 on Google search last week was the death of Hugh Hefner – an American businessman who created the Playboy Magazine before spanning it into a media and entertainment-industry giant.

Hugh passed away on Wednesday at the age of 91, and is remembered for fighting free-speech battles in courts, defying segregation, while living a life of seemingly breezy bachelorhood as publicly as possible.

Google celebrated its 19th birthday last week. In honor of the anniversary, Google allowed users to play with 19 of its best games and interactive Google Doodles all linked to the surprise spinner.

The Google birthday surprise spinner became the 3rd most searched item online in the past one week.

The country’s love for wrestling was also exhibited last week by the number of Kenyans who went online searching for news and stats of the WWE No Mercy matches.

No Mercy is a professional wrestling pay-per-view event that took place on September 24, 2017, at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. With a total of 7 matches, the show lasted 3 hours, 0 minutes and 7seconds.


Google search trends for the week affirmed that the persona of the IEBC CEO has not been erased from Kenyans’ interest. For the eighth week in a row, Ezra Chiloba remains top of trending names in the 2017 elections, last week staying at No.7.

President Uhuru’s son, Muhoho Kenyatta was the ninth trending query after a video of him reading a “mobile phone speech” went viral. His vote of thanks in Swahili during a tour of Nandi County alongside DP William Ruto, has driven a section of Kenyans and local comedians to start the #MuhohoChallenge.


However, the week ended on a sad note with Kenyans going online to search for news on the demise of the PS Mariam El Maawy. The former Public Works Principal Secretary died on Tuesday last week in a hospital in South Africa – three months after an Al-Shabaab attack. During the Mpeketoni attack, Ms El-Maawy had been abducted by the militia only to rescued by the Kenya Defence Forces and the police with a bullet lodged in her left shoulder and burns on her legs. The late PS, who trended at No.10 was laid to rest on Saturday and becomes the senior most government official to die in an Al Shabaab attack.


Google Search Trends is a publicly available tool that indicates search patterns over a period of time and shows the clusters of searches that made it to the weekly trending searches in the country. Here are results for the most popular searches by Kenyans in the past week in descending order:


  1. Babu Owino
  2. Football: Arsenal Vs west Brom, Chelsea vs Manchester City
  3. Google birthday surprise spinner
  4. Tibim, tibim meaning
  5. Hugh Hefner, Playboy
  6. Subversion
  7. Ezra chiloba
  8. WWE No Mercy, No Mercy results
  9. Muhoho Kenyatta
  10. Mariam El Maawy

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