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KFCB issues warning to persons sharing inappropriate content

The Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) has warned individuals’ sharing graphics and disturbing audio-visual content on social media platforms that they risk prosecution.

KFCB acting Chief Executive Officer Christopher Wambua lamented that the vice has not only become rampant, but has also taken a disconcerting turn with some bloggers and social media users, sharing offensive video content with the potential to cause harm.

Wambua said it is perturbing that some media users were increasingly misusing digital apps to host and stream live video sessions of explicit adult shows in blatant breach of the country’s laws and sharing intimate videos of other parties without their consent.

The Acting CEO said the law is categorical that, a person who transfers, publishes, disseminates, distributes and downloads through a telecommunications network and transfers data to a computer of intimate or obscene images of another person commits an offence and is liable to conviction, or a fine not exceeding Sh200, 000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or both.

“Some apps are transformed into digital brothels from midnight, while others are non-consensual dissemination of intimate images of individuals in violation of privacy laws,” he added.

Wambua singled out the recent streaming of graphic content of a mother killing a minor in Kitengela in total disregard of the interest and safety of children and other vulnerable members of society.

Speaking at a press conference at the KFCB headquarters at Uchumi House Wednesday, on the rampant sharing of inappropriate audio visual content on social media platforms, the Acting CEO said freedom of expression as enshrined in the constitution, does not allow the infringement on the rights of the child, youth and individuals whose privacy has been violated.

“The Board has been and shall continue to monitor various platforms with a view to collecting evidence for onward transmission to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations for prosecution,” warned Wambua.

The Ag. CEO at the same time called upon parents, caregivers and guardians to keenly monitor the content their children access in social media networks, broadcast channels and other platforms in order to stop them from accessing inappropriate content.

“Parents are encouraged to activate the safety features available on various platforms and smart devices used by minors in order to protect children from corruption of their moral,” stated Wambua.

“We will continue empowering parents and caregivers with the necessary skills and knowledge to enable them help children navigate the online environment safely through Parental Digital Literacy programme,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Board is collaborating with Netflix, Tik Tok and Google to empower parents with knowledge to undertake their parenting responsibilities effectively in the digital environment.

He urged social media platform operators, online distributors and exhibitors to strictly enforce their community guidelines to avoid misuse of their platforms, while stressing that moderation of content in their platforms must be in alignment with the country’s laws and cultural values.

“We urge registered audio-visual content platforms and operators across the country to adhere to the provisions of Cap 222 and other laws, and create content that does not compromise our culture, moral values and national aspirations,” he said.

Wambua also called on industry players and other stakeholders to submit their inputs on the draft regulations and guidelines regarding Films and on Stage Plays regulations and film classification that was published by the Ministry of Youth Affairs, the Arts and Sport.

He said Ministry in consultation with the Board is reviewing the legal and policy environment with the aim of ensuring and an enabling regulatory and legal environment in the sector.

By Ali Sheikh

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