Kenyan Journalists Resign Over Government Interference


It has been reported that columnists from Kenya’s top media group resigned en masse on Tuesday accusing it of letting the government interfere with editorial decisions, a charge the publisher denied.

In a stand against the Kenyatta's tightening grip on power eight writers of opinion pieces accused management at Nation Media Group (NMG) - which publishes the Daily Nation, Kenya’s most widely read paper - of being too close to the ruling party.

“We refuse to continue to clothe the loss of editorial independence and media freedom at the NMG with respectability,” the columnists said in a statement on Twitter. The said it appeared the executive was able “to influence who works for or contributes” to the papers.

President Uhuru Kenyatta’s government launched a security crackdown after the legitimacy of his re-election in October was challenged by opposition leader Raila Odinga. He continues to exercise excessive amounts on control on the country, leading to criticism from both national and international observers.

This crackdown has included the deportation of opposition politician Miguna Miguna. 

After his initial deportation in February, a court ordered that Mr. Miguna be granted re-entry, however on Monday Nairobi immigration officers refused to accept his Kenyan passport and asked him to surrender his Canadian travel document, his lawyer Nelson Havi said.

Journalist attemtping to cover the event were assaulted and left bleeding on the ground, according to video footage and one Nation journalist.