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Media Monitoring Committee wants David Matsanga, 7 bloggers investigated for social media incitement

By Isaac Meso | May 28th 2014
David Matsanga.

Nairobi, Kenya: The National Steering Committee on Media Monitoring has called for the investigation and possible prosecution of Uganda Peace Negotiator, David Matsanga for hate speech and incitement.

The committee has also recommended the investigations of 7 bloggers by the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) in connection with extreme hate speech, incitement and use of obscenities over the social media.

The committee, led by Chair Mary Ombara cautioned that unless drastic  steps  are taken  now , the negative  debate  on  social media which focuses  on the  political lineation and relationships of three main ethnic groups might  spark chaos  in the country.

 “The National Steering Committee on Media Monitoring commends the measures being taken by NCIC and DPP to arrest and investigate perpetrators of Hate Speech in Social Media. In this connection, the committee recommends for the investigation on one David Matsanga for incitement” said Ombara.

Ombara further noted that it is only a matter of time before bloggers of Hate speech and Incitement are positively identified and prosecuted.

According to the committee the bloggers accused of hate speech and incitement  include; John Mutuku, Abdul Majid Mohamed, Joseph Mwangi, Wycliff Ojijo, Tonny Lijodi, Esther Wanjala and  Simon Mbugua.

“The committee is engaging with the Administrator of Facebook to positively identify these bloggers due to their posts that are deemed criminal and could stir political unrest” she reiterated.

Ombara was speaking Wednesday during a press briefing at Teleposter towers, in Nairobi. Police Spokesperson Zipporah Mboroki was present.

Mboroki warned the public against posting false alerts over eminent terror threats and that action will be soon taken against those found doing so.

When asked over the issue of banning of political rallies by the Inspector General, the Police Spokesperson insisted that the ban was still on and that they had been powered by the Constitution to maintain law and order at all times.

“The ban on all political rallies is still on and it is based on intelligence that we have received. So we are urging political leaders to abide to our call for them to keep off from holding rallies for now until the security situation in the country improves” she noted.

The committee has also called for the urgent re-institution of the NCIC A and appointment of NCIC commissioners to manage Hate speech and Incitement 

Some of their other recommendations include the empowerment of NCIC to enable it undertake its national operations and intervention by the Media to help arbitrate in the Ethnic and Political divisions that are currently being witnessed in the country.

The committee also released new guidelines that bloggers must observe when posting information on the social media.

 Some of these new guidelines call on bloggers to avoid posting comments that are extremely emotive and abusive. They are also required to confirm the veracity of their content before going online in conformity with the NCIC Act and the Sexual Offences Act.

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