Information, Communications and Technology Cabinet Secretary, Joe Mucheru, has reiterated that Journalists’ safety is the responsibility of the state.
Speaking during the launch of Eastern Africa Conference on National Mechanisms for Safety of Journalists, the CS alluded that violation of journalist rights not only endangers the life of the media personnel but deprives citizens their right to access information.
This comes a few weeks after two Kenyan journalists were assaulted at a meeting called by the opposition National Super Alliance at the Wiper party headquarters in Nairobi on October 31, 2017.
“The government has set up legal and institutional frameworks that guarantee freedom of expression, media freedom and access of information according to article 34 of the 2010 constitution,” said Mucheru.
The assaulted journalists were Citizen TV’s Francis Gachuri and NTV’s Jane Gatwiri.
A section of NASA supporters accused Citizen TV of bias in the manner in which they reported the elections. They approached the veteran jounralist, assaulted him before ejecting him from the premises.
Ms. Gatwiri, while filming the assault on Mr. Gachuri, was told to stop and even slapped and pushed.
CS Joe Mucheru admitted the tense political climate has been a tough moment for both the media and the government.
He, however, urged the media to practice professionalism and act responsibly and join hands in fighting fake news.
“We expect the press to practice the trade professionally and responsibly with due regards of the rights and freedoms of others in equal measure,” he added.
While affirming that Kenya’s media is among the most dynamic, free and robust on the continent, the CS also asked the media to portray a good picture of the country.
Be our ambassadors and spread the good news that Kenya is resilient, secure, stable and good for business,” he said.