Finally freedom has come; now journalists can enjoy what’s theirs


The International day to end impunity for crimes against journalists is always commemorated on 2nd November every year. Kenya joined to commemorate the day at a time where there are media risks and threats in the country and also worldwide.

“If we cannot keep a journalist as prominent in our country, can we keep ourselves safe? That’s a question that we must ask ourselves. And we must ask that because we are just coming out of election period and if we look at the records, there are dozens of journalists who came under attack and threats by politicians and by goons hired by politicians for no sin other than doing their job. We owe these fellow citizens a duty to make sure that their cases are not pushed under the carpet.” President of Kenya Editors Guild Churchill Otieno said.

In this light, the Kenya Union of Journalists is calling for the protection of press freedom and an end to economic crimes against journalists.
“Mental well-being of journalists in newsroom actually is now at risk because journalists have not been paid for two months. Employers issued notice for redundancy that has almost expired and nothing is happening and no one is talking to these employees so that they can be prepared. So as we condemn crimes against journalists, we must look at economic crimes against journalists. Journalists who are subjected to slavery, no contracts, no pay and even if it is there, it is too little as the cost of living is high.”

The Cabinet Secretary for ICT and Digital economy Eliud Owalo has promised to protect
journalists and to safeguard press freedom.

“We as a country and indeed the government, The Kenya Kwanza government respect media freedom, we hold media freedom dear to our hearts and we will do everything possible as government to ensure that media freedom is upheld in conformity to the relevant articles of the constitution.

Speaking during the commemoration, president of the Kenya Editors Guild Churchil Otieno has called for more investment in the media sector to create safe space for journalists to execute their work. Journalists around the country do not have the safe space where they can do their work freely and comfortably.

There is need to implement effective laws that will safeguard the press as a whole to avoid journalists being harassed. The journalists should just be allowed to do their work of informing citizens what is happening around the world which is relevant to the citizens and which can be of good help to them.

By Calvin Angatia


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