SENATOR GIDEON MOI STATEMENT ON MEDIA SHUTDOWN
Over the last four days, Kenyans have been in information darkness after the government shut down the main Television stations in the country.
This is unfortunate step taken by the government given that media freedom is enshrined in the constitution which the government swore to abide by and protect.
Section 34 (1) is clear that freedom and independence of electronic, print and all other types of media is guaranteed and that the state shall not exercise control over or interfere with any person engaged in broadcasting, the production or circulation of any publication or dissemination of information by any medium.
The same constitution also gives media practitioners with right to practice its trade without the government penalising for any opinion or view or the content of any broadcast, publication or dissemination.
And even after the media houses obtained a court order for the re-opening of the stations, the government has ignored and the country continues to find itself in information blackout with no one knowing for how long. Journalists also find themselves in a worrying environment of intimidation and harassment for doing their work.
Though the government has indicated that the stations are under investigations, they do not have to be off-air for investigations to go on. Let them switch on as investigations are done and if it turns out that they are culpable, action be taken at that point. What is happening now is contrary to the law of natural justice where one remains innocent until proven guilty.
I am thus calling on the government to call on to respect the rule of law it expects its citizens to obey and move with speed and switch on the signals of the stations it has switched off as per the court order. It should also guarantee journalists of their safety and working environment free of intimidation and harassment.
Hon. Senator Gideon Moi
Senate ICT Chariman
2nd February 2018
I don’t and didn’t expect Moi to slam Jubilee he violently supported and campaigned hard for. He should just swallow the sweet murzik himself brewed.