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Kameme FM’s open political bias ruins balanced debate

The political opinions of journalists are taken seriously by news consumers. The public tends to trust media as credible sources of information and any content channeled through an outlet is assumed to be final and true. The content can influence decisions and opinions. Therefore, there is a potential risk and influence if journalists decide to take sides during political discussions. It is not a question of whether, but it is totally unacceptable. Media should always remain neutral especially during electioneering period.

For example, during Arahuka show on Kameme FM on July 21, Gatonye Wa Mbugua and his cohost Kiengei Watoria discussed political parties and the emerging coalitions. They compared Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper), Gideon Moi (Kanu) and Musalia Mudavadi (ANC). They dismissed these leaders as joking around with their politics, and they will go nowhere because they have no funds.

The host went ahead to compare himself with Wetang’ula and said that if he happened to be in one ballot paper, he would be ahead of him because Wetang’ula has no following or funds too. He said in One Kenya Alliance, it is Gideon who has the say.

It is okay to give an opinion on air but taking sides as a presenter is a breach of the Code of Conduct.

There is this popular radio show called Baraza that invites political leaders and journalists to discuss matters of the past week. The main topic in this show was the just completed by-elections in Kiambaa and Muguga. The guests present were from Jubilee Party and UDA.

One journalist said that he lives in Kiambaa and voted for Kariri Njama. There was one supporting UDA and when given a chance to comment, he was allowed less time. He was often interrupted as the presenter allowed the Jubilee supporter more time to contribute.

In the morning show, the host Gatonye Wa Mbugua with his cohost Kiengei Watoria were clearly biased. The host openly expressed full support for Jubilee Party instead of being neutral as a journalist.

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