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Queen of Katwe actress, Nikita Waligwa passes away at age 15



Uganda actress Nikita Pearl Waligwa, best known for her role ‘Gloria’ in the “Queen of Katwe”, has died at the age of 15.

She died on Saturday night at TMR International Hospital, in Naalya, Kampala following a long period of illness of brain cancer.

Nikita Pearl Waligwa was best known for acting in the 2016 American biographical drama film ‘Queen of Katwe’ the film which depicts the life of Phiona Mutesi, a Ugandan girl living in a slum in Katwe.


Nikita has been battling a brain tumour and was first diagnosed in 2016.

Consequently, she had surgery in April 2016. Shortly after the surgery, Nikita was diagnosed with cancer and she underwent radiotherapy in July 2016.

In February 2017, when she went for a review, she was declared cancer free.

However, early last year 2019, Nikita was diagnosed with another brain tumour.


A family member said Gloria was living a lot of pain.

“The brain was swollen and it is exerting a lot of pressure” – close family member revealed.

The movie, Queen of Katwe, is a very Disney movie in that it centers around a family and has a happy ending. But it is a very un-Disney story in that it unblinkingly examines the poverty, violence, and racism its protagonists face every day. It is, in the words of its director, “a radical film for Disney in many ways. … It has beauty and barbarity side-by-side.”

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