MOMBASA, Kenya, Mar 25 – The government is calling upon the media to desist from airing content likely to spread anxiety and trigger violence as the country heads towards the General Elections.
During a press conference in Mombasa on Saturday, Government Spokesperson Eric Kiraithe challenged the media to complement efforts of security agencies in ensuring the country remains peaceful.
“We’re calling upon the media to repeatedly pass the message that this country is bigger than any politician. The media has no responsibility whatsoever giving voice to people spreading anxiety implying that if they lose there will be no Kenya,” Kiraithe urged.
According to Kiraithe, sensational reporting by media houses posses a great challenge to national security, hence the need for the fourth estate to exercise caution while reporting on political events.
Kiraithe also highlighted efforts made by the government to restore the confidence of major tourism source countries in parts of the nation where travel advisories had been issued saying such gains should not be eroded through publication of reckless remarks by politicians.
“The government has invested a lot making this country secure and getting travel advisories withdrawn. It is just a few weeks ago when a travel advisory was withdrawn for the first time since 2011 when terrorism activities started there,” he observed.
“When we (media) are the people declaring places hotspots our tourism source countries do not need to declare advisories, we are giving it for free,” he added
Kiraithe reiterated the government’s commitment in ensuring the country remains stable during the electioneering period encouraging security officers to discharge their mandate in accordance with the law without taking sides.
Politicians hiring goons to wreak havoc have also been forewarned Kiraithe saying that those found culpable will be dealt with firmly.
Members of the public were also warned against creating disturbances in political rallies or rival political parties, the government advising those not interested in certain political rallies to keep off since every political formation had a right to assemble in any part of the country.
“You don’t need to attend meetings to create riots. Keep off meetings of leaders you don’t like,” he warned.