Home » John Chebochok Demands Ksh.100 Million from BBC After Explosive Expose

John Chebochok Demands Ksh.100 Million from BBC After Explosive Expose

by Paul Nyongesa
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John Chebochok, the newly elected Director of Toror Tea Factory, has issued a Ksh.100 million defamation claim against the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) following their controversial documentary, “Sex for Work: The True Cost of Our Tea.” The 2023 expose accused Chebochok of preying on female workers at a James Finlay Limited factory in Kericho in exchange for employment opportunities.

Chebochok, through his lawyer Danstan Omari, has vehemently denied these allegations, labeling them as outrageous and part of a calculated scheme designed to defame his character. He contends that the accusations were orchestrated by his political and business rivals, aiming to undermine his reputation and influence within the tea industry.

“Politicians who are against our client’s political bid appeared to have been angered that he implemented mechanization at Finlay. As a result, some of their voters lost jobs, and the said competitors fought the process unsuccessfully,” the letter stated, highlighting the alleged motivations behind the smear campaign.

Omari criticized the BBC for airing the documentary without seeking Chebochok’s input, emphasizing that the documentary, which has amassed over 2.8 million views on YouTube, lacked balance and fairness. He further pointed out that none of the alleged victims featured in the video had filed complaints with the police or any other investigative authorities, calling into question the credibility of the claims.


“The malicious broadcast of your documentary has caused our client significant emotional, psychological, and unwarranted distress and stigma. Several entities have since used your documentary to recklessly tarnish our client’s name,” Omari asserted. He also accused detractors of using the documentary’s content to subvert Chebochok’s democratic election as Toror Tea Factory director.

In his demand letter, Chebochok insists that the BBC issue a full public apology, retract the documentary, and cease publishing any further defamatory statements. Omari warned that failure to comply within three working days would result in legal action to protect Chebochok’s image.

The fallout from the documentary has also prompted international tea suppliers to call for Chebochok’s removal as director. Both Finlays and Lipton Teas and Infusions have ceased purchasing tea from Toror Factory and urged other stakeholders to do the same until Chebochok steps down.

In light of these developments, the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) has appealed for patience, asking stakeholders to allow them to address the concerns raised and work with relevant authorities to resolve the issues.

Chebochok’s battle with the BBC underscores the intense scrutiny and challenges faced by industry leaders, particularly in a sector as vital and competitive as tea production.

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