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Council identifies regions hostile to journalists

By -Antony Gitonga | July 9th 2013

By Antony Gitonga

Nairobi,Kenya:The Media Council of Kenya (MCK) has identified Western and North Eastern Kenya as the most hostile regions in the country for journalists to work.

The council said it had already relocated over ten journalists from these areas after receiving death threats from politicians.

This came as a new study by the council on 452 journalists across the country indicated that 75 per cent of them had received various threats.

According to the council’s deputy executive officer Victor Bwire, they had already relocated the eight journalists from Western Kenya and Mandera to safer places after they received deaths threats. “Western Kenya is leading in terms of threats to journalists followed by towns like Mandera, Garissa and some towns in the North Rift,” Mr Bwire said.

Safety of journalists

Other towns according to Bwire where journalists had been threatened were Bungoma, Gatundu, Malindi and Mombasa. He said the council was committed to the safety of journalists adding that they had launched a toll-free number 0720222111 to deal with the threats.  “Rwanda has the highest number of journalists on the run in Africa and the ongoing vice in Kenya is worrying,” he said.

He was speaking on the sidelines of a workshop for journalists and editors organised by Kentrade at a Naivasha hotel.

And unlike the past when police were the main culprits, politicians and their supporters lead in issuing the threats in the form of e-mails, telephone calls and SMS.


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