, SAMBURU, Kenya, Aug 15 – Kenya Tourism Board Managing Director Muriithi Ndegwa says CNN advert deal remains suspended even after the apology from the US broadcaster.
Speaking to journalists during the 26th edition of the Maralal Camel Derby, Ndegwa says they are still in consultations with the Tourism Ministry and other stakeholders for further action on the deal.
“The apology was a positive move however we are not giving any promises that the deal will be reinstated,” Ndegwa said.
This comes after CNNs Global Executive Vice President and Managing Director Tony Maddox flew to Nairobi from Atlanta to personally deliver the apology to President Uhuru Kenyatta after the broadcaster repeatedly reported that Obama was visiting Kenya the ‘hotbed of terrorism’.
At a meeting in State House in Nairobi, Maddox admitted that CNN’s description of Kenya as a “hotbed of terror” was both undeserved and ill-conceived.
“We acknowledge there is a widespread feeling that the report annoyed many, which is why we pulled down the report as soon as we noticed. It wasn’t a deliberate attempt to portray Kenya negatively, it is regrettable and we shouldn’t have done it. There is a world at a war with extremists; we know what a hotbed of terror looks like, and Kenya isn’t one,” Maddox said.
Kenya had signed a Sh110million deal for a one year campaign targeting the United States, Europe, Asia and Africa.
President Uhuru Kenyatta expressed his deep disappointment at the story not only on behalf of the government but also because it angered the people of Kenya.
“In one stroke, CNN’s description of Kenya as a ‘hotbed of terror’ undermined the sacrifices made by our Kenyan troops and the value of lives lost and relegates them to nothing” President Kenyatta added during the meeting held this week.
In a televised CNN report preceding President Obama’s July trip to Kenya, the news network has referred to the East African country as a ‘hotbed of terror’ while highlighting the possibility of an attack by Al-Shabaab militants during the President’s visit.
Kenyans were not amused and took to social media platform, twitter where they used sarcastic humour at CNN under the hash tag #SomeoneTellCNN, which ended up trending on for a few days.