Photo posted on Twitter mocking foreign correspondents
Permanent secretary (PS) at the Ministry of Information and Communication Bitange Ndemo said the government acknowledged the important role played by the international media in casting the country in a positive light, terming them as partners.
Ndemo warned inciters on social media who have continued the bashing of CNN reporter Nima Elbagir, saying they risked prosecution.
“We are making every effort to see that those who are propagating this message we get to arrest some of them and they face the law but we are not going to be annoyed to interfere with the Internet the way it’s been working,” he said.
In what seems like a softer stand compared to the one taken by his ministry, warning all non-accredited journalists of prosecution, the PS said his ministry would assist all foreign journalists in acquiring the necessary papers to continue working legally in the country.
International journalists working in Kenya have come under intense pressure to write positive stories after CNN aired a story before the elections citing a grouping of tribes in readiness for war after the general election.
Citing the unsolved case of murdered international journalist Julie Ward, Ndemo said having the right papers was in the interest of journalists, with the government keeping a track of which correspondents were in the country.
At the same time, the PS urged foreign correspondents to ensure they carry out proper investigations before airing their stories, saying the damage by some of the reports is irreparable.
Just recently US President Obama touched on the topic at the Gridiron dinner, terming Kenya a hostile place for foreign journalists and comparing it to Syria, attracting protests from Kenyans on Twitter in the trend #someonetellobama.