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Waihiga Mwaura and the tricky act of interviewing good and evil on air

Watching Wahiga Mwaura interview two politicians on two comments ‘allegedly’ made by two politicians about a senior politician (It is amazing the lengths we go to avoid naming these Waheshimiwa even when their clips are in the public domain) left a wee of bad aftertaste.

But then, there is that feared libel trap to think of.

Still, at the end of the interview one was left wondering what was more distasteful between the alleged comments of the viral vitriol of both sides of the political divide backing or loudly criticising what was posted online.

Now, watching Wahiga Mwaura interviewing Raphael Tuju and thereafter, Tuju’s deputy Caleb Kositany, one could not help admiring the veteran journalist’s efforts at maintaining a semblance of balance, and pitying him for failing.

It brought out the difficult task that is interviewing a Kenyan politician on air. It is akin to watching two tigers struggling on the leases to reach each other.

It is like to refereeing a WWF wrestling match, who, although their moves are carefully choreographed and acted out, manage to convince their audience that if it were not for the ref, they could easily break their opponent’s neck.

As many news anchors have found out the hard way, interviewing Kenyan politicians on air is like another late politician said, juggling a humongous piece of raw liver. It can go either way.

So here was Waihiga trying to tone down one side that was seeing an ethnic angle in criticism levelled against them; while, trying to not to lose the watching audience that believed the two politicians needed a thorough caning.

In the end, the poor guy chose the moral side, chiding those that appeared to side with those arguing that the politicians in question were entitled to their opinion.

So Waihiga politely reminded one side on the importance of family values and how Kenyan politicians breached these left and right.

In the end, he appeared to talk down on the argument that some of the pontificating crowd was indeed, ethicising the entire debate, that some of the loudest on the moral pedestal were not exactly saints.

Still, we shall not be the first to cast the first stone at Waihiga. Instead, we say let anyone who has not interviewed a Kenyan politician live on air be the first to cast the first stone.

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