By Lucianne Limo
The media have been urged to play a critical role in ensuring free, fair, and peaceful elections.
The Netherlands Ambassador to Kenya, Joost Reintjes, challenged journalists to be vigilant and ensure fair coverage for successful elections.
Reintjes said his Government would support the Independent Elections and Boundaries Commission in many ways, among them conducting civic education to ensure the public is well informed.
“This is a complicated process where Kenyans will be required to choose six leaders at once. Therefore, it is important for people to understand the voting process,” he said during a courtesy call on the Standard Group Deputy Chairman and Chief Executive Paul Melly, on Thursday.
Mr Reintjes has just started his tour of duty after taking over from Laetitia Van den Assum.
He said his country and Kenya have enjoyed a long and fruitful co-operation in trade, tourism, and governance.
Melly welcomed the envoy and said the need to have a credible media that shape public opinion was critical. He said the only assets a media house should protect and boast of its credibility and public confidence.
Melly said without the two, the media would be undermined.
“You can have the most beautiful building or state of the art equipment, but without enjoying the confidence of the public, all this would be worthless,” he said.
Melly assured the envoy that the Standard Group puts public interest ahead of everything else.
He said the media house that boasts of The Standard and County Weekly newspapers, KTN, Digital Online, PDS, and Radio Maisha was prepared to cover elections without any vested interests. He assured all vying for elective posts of fair coverage.