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Exercise responsible journalism, ICT Cabinet Secretary urges media

Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Cabinet Secretary (CS) Joe Mucheru Monday called on the media to exercise responsible journalism and avoid spreading unnecessary fear among Kenyans.
Mucheru said “we are getting to a place where as a country we need more responsible journalism especially in the cases of some of the insecurities that we are facing”.
The CS singled out the Latema road incident saying that it had been blown out of proportion to a place where you would have thought that Nairobi was on fire.
“Live reporting sometimes becomes a problem because everyone else gets attracted to this place and it becomes a security challenge. In many countries there is an unspoken agreement for example in the UK if for instance the queen passes on the media will not show any cartoons but in our case you call to tell people not to show some stuff and they will tell you that the others are showing it,” explained Mucheru.
Speaking while addressing a selection panel for the new Media Council of Kenya (MCK) chairperson, Mucheru said that the Media council needs to get this done so that they could take charge of the media and help avoid travel advisories.
“The media council is very important for the country since this is where the training and monitoring of the media takes place. As a country if we are going to develop, media is at the heart of it. Without a free and open media we are not going to get anywhere so as government we fully support media and access to information as enshrined in the constitution,” said the CS.
“There are always challenges that come between the media and other arms of the government for instance recently  Chief Justice (CJ) David Maraga was having a problem with the bloggers and media so he has joined most of us as you heard from the president,” he said.
He added that there needs to be a place where people get the training and all the support they need to know how to support sensitive events as well as a place to channel their complaints.
A 13 member selection panel drawn from various organisation as per the media act and an eight member secretariat from the ministry of ICT will shortlist suitable candidates for the available position from the names of those who applied. The CS will appoint a Chairperson from the list of names that will be forwarded to him.
By Joseph Ng’ang’a

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