- Daddy Owen has a squint eye which he got from a beating by an angry audience he was trying to rob.
- Eventually, Owen did an operation which was successful, although he lost the eye.
Daddy Owen explained why he was inspired to start the Malaika Tribute Awards.
"The event is close to my heart as one of the persons living with a disability," Owen told Word Is.
Daddy Owen has a squint eye which he got from a beating by an angry audience he was trying to rob.
This was back in his thieving days.
"Before going for an operation, I lived with a dent for a while and this really made me go through some stigma because I got some attention in the streets which I did not like."
He recounts days he would be walking in town and realize guys were staring him, only to realize that they were actually looking at his eye.
Eventually, Owen did an operation which was successful, although he lost the eye.
"Through that, I discovered that any person living with a disability goes through a lot. The stigma is very hard to handle. When you look at a disabled person, they don't see that as normal, they feel victimized. That was the main reason I started Malaika Tribute Award to celebrate achievements by people living with various forms of disabilities," he said.
This years celebration marked the eighth year since he founded it.
"It is just a way of giving back to the society because as an artiste you cannot be in the music industry for so long and there is nothing you are doing for them. The most important thing is I do something that I am doing from my heart.
It is my satisfaction. Owen does the organization and the planning but make sure people living with disability go home happy.
"I have been using one eye all through which I appreciate because there are people out there who have no arms but they are doing great things in the society."
The Nguvu Ya Msalaba star says although he can confidently speak about his condition, it took him so long to talk about it.
"The greatest lesson I have learnt is that your mind is so powerful despite your condition. Never judge people with what you see in them appreciate each person," he said.