The Media Council of Kenya (MCK) has warned Embakasi East Member of Parliament Babu Owino after he allegedly sent threatening messages to Citizen TV Editor Muraya Kariuki.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, September 7, 2021, the Media Council of Kenya (MCK) cautioned the Embakasi East lawmaker against intimidating journalists and asked him to withdraw the messages.
The council also demanded that the legislator issue an apology to the Citizen TV news editor noting that his remarks were a major infringement on press freedom.
“Media Council of Kenya takes exception with the threats issued by Embakasi East MP Babu Owino to Citizen TV journalist Muraya Kariuki on his coverage of the ODM leader. This amounts to intimidation and a major infringement on press freedom,” a statement from the MCK read in part.
The MCK added that the MP ought to protect the Constitution which he vowed to obey when he took office by respecting freedom of the press.
“By virtue of his position as a legislator, we demand that the MP protects the very provisions of the Constitution that protect freedom of expression, press freedom and access to information as provided for in the Constitution,” the MCK added.
The MCK which is a properly constituted organ to protect media freedom in Kenya insisted that the Embakasi East Lawmaker must apologize to Kariuki and the entire media fraternity.
It further encouraged the MP to file any grievances he has with the Media Complaints Commission and assured him that the matter will be looked into once he reports it.
“We advise MP Babu Owino to file any media grievances he has with the commission which is legally mandated to handle such matters under section 27 of the Media Council Act, 2013 and issues appropriate remedies,” the statement added.
MCK also strongly condemned politicians who threaten Journalists while on official duties. Further, the Council asked politicians to promote positive dialogue as the country heads into an electioneering period.
Muraya, on Monday, September 6, took to social media to expose threatening messages allegedly sent to him by the Embakasi East Member of Parliament.
He shared screenshots of Babu’s derogatory messages and tweets about him.