Raila cautioned over attack on media

The Media Council of Kenya (MCK), Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ), and Kenya Editors’ Guild (KEG) have expressed their concerns over remarks made by Raila Odinga, the leader of the Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Coalition, calling for the boycott of several products and services, including a local media house.

The media groups cautioned Raila, saying that his comments were an attack on media freedom and could endanger the lives of journalists working for the media house.

Raila had urged his supporters to boycott the products and services, claiming that the companies had become “enablers and facilitators of this brutal regime” and “enemies of the people”.

The media groups, however, resented Raila’s remarks, calling on him to refrain from making such comments that could undermine the freedom of the press.

MCK Chairperson David Omwoyo condemned Raila’s remarks, saying that they attempted to manipulate public opinion and undermine the freedom of the press, which is an essential right that allows journalists to report on events, issues, and people without fear of censorship or repression.

Omwoyo added that such comments could make journalists working for the media house a target.

KUJ Secretary General Eric Odour echoed Omwoyo’s concerns, stating that the boycott call and derogatory remarks not only punctured the independence of the media but also put the lives of journalists at risk.

He warned that journalists working with the media house would soon become victims of assault by overzealous Azimio supporters all over the country.

The President of KEG, Churchill Otieno, also criticized Raila’s comments, describing them as an attack on media freedom and a direct affront to democracy. Otieno warned that Raila’s remarks could have the effect of exposing journalists to harm and subverting democracy.

The media groups called on Raila and the Azimio coalition to channel any grievances to the Media Complaints Commission and to refrain from making comments that could undermine the freedom of the press.

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