Wild About Africa

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Kenyan journalist-speak

Kenyan journalists must have all trained at the same school of journalism where they earned their MC’s – Master of  Cliches.

President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga Yesterday held “closed door meetings” of their parties to “hammer out party positions on new law ahead of negotiations. Meanwhile “heavy rains pound various parts of the country”.

Here are some of our favourite cliches.

Wrongful shootings by police –  “killed in  a shoot out, unclear if he was felled by police bullet or if carjackers shot him”

Exra-judicial police killings of suspects – “Carjacker was gunned down”

Impersonators – “masquerading as a tax official”

Illegal search of suspects house – “Tobacco, pillows, knife and fork, and a kitchen sink were also found in the mans house”

Lobbying –  “angling to get a foothold”

Investigating fraud – “unravel theft”

While cliches allow editors to recycle about 50% of all phrases each day, journalists reserve the best chiches for themselves whenever the Media Act is discussed.

Lets be clear, the new media legislation aims ban on offensive language and glorification of violence. Sounds good no? No? Not according to journalists who go overboard on the issue describing it as  “anti democratic, narrow minded, gagging the media, fundamentally violating the enjoyment of Kenyan citizens,  muzzling the media, and contravening the right to freedom of expression and conscience of, and free press”

I think I love this new law – finally something to stop Caroline Mutoko and gang from gay bashing and spreading homophobic hate and violence.


January 12, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. Goooo Paula!

    Comment by Yeye | January 12, 2010 | Reply

  2. There are so many more things that are said by the Kenyan media. Maybe its true that parts of the bill are bad but then again…they do need some regulation. Wamekua kama watoto watukutu!!

    Comment by Lind | January 12, 2010 | Reply

    • I didn’t read the entire bill but am commenting on what was reported in the press today (Daily Nation)

      Comment by paulakahumbu | January 12, 2010 | Reply

  3. the script was spot on until you shot yourself in the mouth on the last two paragraphs.Caroline Mutoko bashing on Gay people has nothing to do with the Media Bill stop digressing cuz you’ve already made your stand known…

    Comment by Mr. Burns | January 12, 2010 | Reply

    • Thanks! I think…. it’s almost too good to imagine responsible reporting in Kenya where we don’t get upset every time someone defends the rights of every citizen, even those with different sexual preferences.

      Comment by paulakahumbu | January 12, 2010 | Reply

    • Actually the Classic FM DJ’s that Caroline was defending were gay bashing and were calling for gays to be smacked. That’s using the media to spread hate. And its happening again now with the kind of polls that we’re seeing in the media. I’m all for muzzling those members of the press that spread hate and violence.

      Comment by paulakahumbu | January 15, 2010 | Reply

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