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Sonko’s Assault on KTN Journalist Lands Him in Trouble

Nairobi Governor, Mike Sonko’s assault on a Standard Media Group journalist at Integrity Center elicited a swift reaction from Media Council of Kenya (MCK) which has demanded an investigation into the matter.

On Tuesday, November 5, Mike Sonko was caught on camera apparently slapping Collins Kweyu, a photographer, while arriving at the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC).

The council, in a statement posted on Twitter, was outraged by the fact that the police did not take any measures to protect the journalist at the scene, instead, MCK stated that they deliberately hauled teargas canisters at the reporters to prevent them from recording the happenings.

Police hurled tear gas canisters at Mike Sonko's supporters at EACC headquarters on Tuesday, November 5, 2019
Police hurled tear gas canisters at Mike Sonko’s supporters at EACC headquarters on Tuesday, November 5, 2019

“The council calls upon the DCI and ODPP to investigate circumstances surrounding the attacks on Collins Kweyu (SMG), Steve Shitera (Citizen TV), Jeff Angote (NTV) and Joseph Wakhungu (Milele FM), with a view to bringing the culprits to book. 

“The council has also seen a video clip in which the governor Mike Sonko was recorded assaulting Kweyu who was trying to gain access into the EACC premises,” the statement signed by MCK chief executive, David Omwoyo, read.

The council further reiterated its mandate of protecting the rights of journalists and called for immediate investigations into the incident.

“We wish to remind perpetrators of the violence that Press Freedom is a right enshrined in the constitution and any attempt to block journalists from exercising this right amounts to gross violation of the Supreme law.

“We, therefore, appeal to law enforcement agencies to exercise restraint when dealing with journalists in the field,” MCK urged.

On Monday, November 4, Sonko claimed that an EACC official was out to frustrate him due to his sustained fight against land grabbing in Nairobi. 

On the same day, the governor also bought full-page ad space on The Standard to lament over how EACC Director of Investigations, Abdi Mohamud had allegedly misused his office to cover-up crimes.

MCKS's reaction to Mike Sonko's alleged assault of a journalist at EACC headquarters on Tuesday, November 5
MCKS’s statement on Mike Sonko’s alleged assault of a journalist at EACC headquarters on Tuesday, November 5.

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