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Archive for the tag “Ethics of Journalism”

My letter to the Minister of Interior Affairs of Kenya Hon. Joseph Nkaissery on detaining John Ngirachu

Nkaissey 121115

Dear Sir Honorable Joseph Nkaissery!

You did say this yesterday!

To the whole world you said this:

 “Listen there is way, to tell you, You cannot get AWAY with allegation. So it is up to you, if you don’t want to relieve the sources, then you’ll fry Alone! It is…It begins today, if you’re telling the truth. Don’t worry if our friend will be saved. So long as he is telling the truth. If anybody, if you understand ENGLISH, anybody, except two people; the president and his deputy; anybody will be writing statement if you make an allegation, beginning today!”

We know the man frying at that moment  is John Ngirachu; the journalist of the Daily Nation; who was at a Police Station detained by the CID, after writing a story about your Ministry, which you runs honorable Nkaissery. There was to other journalist involved in the stories and not detained yet James Mbaka of the Daily Star and Alphonce Skiundu of the Standard.

This after your Ministry had questioned by the Auditor Generals query on the usage of funds and the use of total Ksh. 3,8 billion in a single day. Honorable Nkaissery you was even questioned on this matter by the Public Accounts Committee in the Parliament.

Your life doesn’t seem easy right now Mr. Nkaissery! You are a public person right? You’re an elected official who are in charge of a government ministry and the funds that brings. Journalist are tiring people, anybody who knows the ways of Daniel Arap Moi; was teaching you this right? Or was it anybody elese?

You sure learned by this history, isn’t that right Honorable Nkaissery?

The Nation has been the subject of frequent government attacks over the past 18 months. Joseph Ngugi, a Nakuru-based correspondent, was one of the first journalists charged in October 1993 with breach of security regulations for attempting to report on political violence in Molo” (…)”Mutegi Njau, the news editor of the Daily Nation, was arrested in April 1994, along with the paper’s Eldoret correspondent, and charged with subversion. The paper had run two stories on official involvement in political violence in the Burnt Forest area of the Rift Valley” (…) “In early January 1995, two Nation reporters were summarily dismissed in circumstances which caused many observers to believe this was a result of official pressure on the company” (Article 19, 1995).

Anybody who knows English and has heard it, remember this one, right?

“Paul Amina was previously arrested in August 1987 (see UA 214/87, AI Index AFR 32/29/87, dated 11 August 1981) and detained under Kenya’s public security regulations, which provide for the indefinite detention without charge or trial of those held to be endangering public security. No reason was given for his arrest in 1987, but it is believed that he was detained because of his reporting of politically sensitive court cases” (…)”Paul Amina, freelance journalist and former prisoner of conscience, was arrested by security police at the International Press Centre in Nairobi on Friday 16 August 1991. He was taken to an unknown destination where he is believed to be held incommunicado. He has not yet been brought to court to be charged with any offence” (AFR 31/26/91, 1991).

Seems like Joseph Nkaissery has learned well, though he needed to teach John Ngirachu a lesson not to make allegations that hurts you. You’re supposed to be Teflon. Anybody should know that! You have only two persons above you and that is The President and his Deputy; therefore detaining a simple little journalist shouldn’t be an issue. You run the Interior Ministry. He only has some Secret Informants and get some leaked information at the Parliament. That bastard!  

The Auditor General shouldn’t even have questioned your for the extra high spending in one day. That is your business, not anybody else, especially not somebody who check society and if there is check and balance. The coverage damage you, therefore it is damaging all of society. Because you’re a pinnacle in society while the Journalist is just a pencil pusher who never couldn’t even have teach the kids of today ENGLISH in Eldoret. You must forgive us. We don’t know English as you honorable Nkaissery.

Honorable Nkaissery you can see from Daniel Arap Moi as your lecturer, he was that also, so you must be one of his noble student. I write this to you because detaining somebody for not giving you the sources of their story on your ministry and monies you’re in charge of. I am sure you wished Ngirachu the treatment of Mr. Njau or Amina of the 90s Kenya. Since you think that is such a proud part of the political heritage! Since you trying to copy it and wish every allegation have to write a statement proving where they got the intelligence. You must be such a noble man Honorable Nkaissery who wishes to have all of this into your ministry. Honarable Nkaissery you must be great fan of extra paperwork to shut down your enemies. And they can’t be trustworthy people if they keep their sources to themselves. They should have Informers in Parliament. That is not noble like you. Anybody would know that.

Honorable Nkaissery what is the truth? What is the honest truth about the monies and your ministry? Why would anybody like the men of the Public Account Committee ask you questions? And why didn’t they ask you directly for statements instead of getting it from informants. You who are such a noble man Nkaissery! Anybody can see that.

I don’t want to to leave you alone or fry you Honorable Nkaissery! But I want to ask how come there was spent so much shillings in your ministry in one day? And why did you detain and ask the two other journalists to be detained for the story? Anybody who has heard the story, wonder about that!

They can’t be saying stuff like they do. Anybody should know the truth. The honest truth from a honorable man like you Joseph Nkaissery! CID got a statement and detained a journalist for an article. That the journalist himself said he got the intel from the Hansard. The Hansard is public property or is there something hidden in the English language that makes them not legal for journalist to read these?

I just want to know the truth Honorable Joseph Nkaissery for why anybody like Ngirachu was detained. That is a statement I want to see and also the reason for why since you have to power over the CID with your station at the ministry honorable Nkaissery. Can you tell that to anybody? I am sure you’re the best source of it. This cannot be seen as political insensitive. It’s just rational sir. So please if you understand my ENGLISH. Please tell this to anybody, the truth in a statement, your allegations of Ngirachu and his colleagues.

John Ngirachu 121115

Sincerely yours

Writer of Minbane.

Reference:

Article 19 –‘Censorship in Kenya: Government critics face the death sentence’ (May 1995) link:   https://www.article19.org/data/files/pdfs/publications/kenya-censorship-in-kenya.pdf

Letter from 1991 – ‘Fear of Torture/Legal Concern’ (19.08.1991) – AFR 31/26/91

Endgame:

Kenya 121115

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The Kenyan Saga of Journalist John Ngirachu: Minister Nkaissery’s statement to journalists (Youtube-Clip), Press Statement from the Media Council of Kenya (10.11.2015), Press release from Raila Odinga & Press Statement from the Kenyan Editors Guild (10.11.2015)

Media Kenya P1Media Kenya P2

STATEMENT BY THE KENYA EDITORS GUILD ON THE ARREST OF NATION MEDIA GROUP JOURNALIST JOHN NGIRACHU

An old proverb aptly advised human kind over the ages that, “Whom the gods wish to destroy, they first make mad.”

This evening, the Cabinet Secretary in charge of the Ministry of Interior Major General (retired) Joseph ole Nkaissery outdid himself in purported execution of the mandate of his Ministry. John Ngirachu, a Nation Media Group journalist on lawful duty in the National Assembly was arrested within the precincts of Parliament on orders of Nkaissery.

The cabinet secretary has evidently followed through his threat to target the media over a report on the Auditor General’s query on how Nkaissery Ministry spent some Ksh.3.8 Billion in a single day.

The Kenya Editors Guild and indeed the entire independent media fraternity is appalled by the arrest of Ngirachu and the bizarre demand by Nkaissery that the journalist ‘reveal the source of the story’. The query of the Auditor General on the Ksh.3.8 Billion Interior Ministry spending is a matter for which Mr. Nkaissery was questioned by the Public Accounts Committee in Parliament and effectively, Nkaissery is one of the sources of the story, and indeed a reliable one.

The demand for source of the story is therefore mere posturing by Nkaissery who has proceeded to threaten that Ngirachu will quote; “be fried if he does not reveal the sources of his story”. We are indeed disappointed with this unpolished language of an otherwise senior cabinet minister; phrases such as ‘frying’ an innocent journalist could at best find home back in 1980s when Nkaissery led an infamous military ‘security operation’ against potentially innocent villagers in West Pokot.

We have also taken note of a 4-page incoherent statement that preceded the arrest of Ngirachu. The statement is an attempt to build a case against not just the media but also a broader base of Kenyans that have dared question a wide range of issues particularly the runaway corruption in government.

The Nkaiserry statement has bizarrely suggested what it terms ‘a choreographed campaign to destroy the government’. The statement termed corruption and the media reporting of it as ‘an internationalized hysteria aimed at harming the Nation.’ Nkaissery also accuses quote “the media of castigating the government as irredeemably corrupt.” The statement then proceeds to warn that those making allegations of corruption will be held to account.

I am urging the media to publish the statement in full so that the public can appreciate the peculiar, even irrational thoughts contained in the 4-page statement.

If the statement is anything to go by, the arrest of journalist John Ngirachu is only the beginning of tougher times for the media and any other independent voices brave enough to raise questions on the corruption crisis that ails our country tonight.

We complete with an assurance, John Ngirachu will be free and back to work shortly.

Thank you.

Linus Kaikai
CHAIRMAN, KENYA EDITORS GUILD

Press release:

HARASSMENT OF JOURNALISTS 

My attention has been drawn to the arrest of Parliamentary Editor for the Nation Media Group, Mr John Ngirachu. I have also learnt of the absurd explanation by Internal Security Cabinet Secretary Mr Joseph Nkaissery that Mr Ngirachu will be released when he reveals the source of the story he wrote on the Internal Security spending.

I want to express my solidarity with the family, friends and media fraternity over this unfortunate development. I also wish to advise the government to respect the timeless tradition that journalists are duty bound to protect the sources of information they have as long as that information is of immense public interest and there was no way of obtaining it other than by relying on confidential sources. I believe that was the case in regard to security ministry spending. This is not the first time spending by internal security ministry is coming into sharp scrutiny.

I wish to assure Mr Ngirachu that I stand with him personally and the Opposition does too. I assure him that his dreams for a free and open society are valid and legal and he must pursue them without any fear of fighting a lone battle. We will do all we can to secure his freedom.

I demand that the young man be freed immediately to pursue his career. Kenya has to move forward and close the chapter of repression and opaqueness in the management of public affairs permanently. I appeal to my colleagues in government to stop entertaining the idea that Kenya can move backwards or stand still.

In the meantime, I have also instructed lawyers Senator James Orengo and Mr Paul Mwangi to immediately get in touch with the Nation Media Group and take up the young editor’s case for free and defend the rights and privileges of the media for the sake of Kenya.

The Rt. Hon Raila A. Odinga, EGH

IGP Kale Kayihura interprets the laws as he see’s it fit

Kale Kayihura

At the Press conference at the police offices in Naguru at the 14th of October, IGP Kale Kayihura told this:

 “We are advising that you propose postpone program. Give Police notice! As required by the law. Within the law and ensure the party presidential aspirant, Dr. Kizza Besigye precide, conduct himself  in line with the Presidential Elections Act Section 3 as well as the Elections Road Map and Guidelines as an Presidential Aspirant given by the Electoral Commission”

He continued with this to the Journalist:

“The thing, you as Journalists, especially NTV, NTV and NBS. Who normally are embedded with, in these convoys, I don’t know for what reason, whether you are really Journalist, at the edge of consents, or your been inducted into parties politics. That goes against by the way the professional ethics of journalism! That got a mandate to go after this, because it’s the broadcast act, the media and journalist act”.

You think the man is done with his triads in the media. No! He is like DJ Khaled he got “another one” while continuing saying this “At this stage of the elections road map! Presidential Aspirants can only consult, but cannot be involved, later on address campaign rallies” (…)“It is not possible for you to go ahead proposed public meeting. This is what the law says: “You can’t go”.  It is not me. Please do not personalize this, it’s the law”.

Ready to Move with Sevo Music Campaign for 2016 P4

Meanwhile, Kale Kayihura was hastily concerned with the FDC and the media for covering their hardships in their convoys. NRM and Yoweri Museveni was in jolly mood with the creative and musicians in the country! Parts of them we’re: Dr. Jose Chameleon, Lady Juliana Kanyomozi, Bebe Cool, Anne Kansiime, Pastor Wilson Bugembe, Haruna Mubiru, Judith Babirye, Stecia Mayanja, Radio and Weazle’s Weazle, Irene Namubiru, Rema Namakula.

Even the Statehouse owns Facebook pages say this: ”President Museveni and the First Lady Hon. Janet Museveni with their daughter Mrs. Natasha Karugire arrive for the #‎TubongaNaawe launch by leading Ugandan Musicians in support of NRM Flag bearer President Museveni”.

Ready to Move with Sevo Music Campaign for 2016 P5

So YKM can easily campaign in this part of the road-map! As seen recently and with the photoes from the glorious occation. So that Mr. Kale Kayihura said what he said on the Press Conference where he was arrogant! Especially about how Journalist about to do their work and their duties. Because this is proof that President Museveni can easily defy the law without any actions, IGP Kale Kayihura? Just as Mzee has done in Gulu, Kasese and Mbale in the recent days? While FDC is jailed, followed and taken from their homes without any actions. And you speak loud to the whole world, but that is the law, right? Are you stupid dumb or dumb stupid? You’re surely not cutting the hand of the man that feeds you! Still Mr. Kale Kayihura, it’s about time you might  refrain youself and recharge, and think about how you look to the world and how the Police you’re in charge of is acting.

Peace.

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