Opiyo Wandayi: Threats to the media are threats to democracy
The Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition has expressed concerns over what it terms as “direct and disguised threats” to journalists and media freedom in the country.
In a letter from the Office of the Minority Leader in the National Assembly Opiyo Wandayi, the Coalition says threats coming from the elected leaders and some state institutions are a means for the government to act in complete darkness.
“With these threats, the stage is being set for media to stop shining the lights on actions of the State and its support cast. The government wants to be allowed to act in darkness so that it can solidify impunity, corruption and dictatorship. We must begin to speak out now before the emerging threats give way to journalists and citizens being killed or imprisoned.”
The Coalition has urged Kenyans to view the threats to journalists and media as a whole as threats to the country’s democracy. The comments come days after the Majority leader in the Senate Aaron Cheruiyot in a tweet called for crushing of what he termed as powerful cartels in the media industry.
“We urge the media, both local and foreign, to refuse to be cowed. We also ask all Kenyans to view threats to journalists and media as a whole are threats to our struggling democracy. Let us all understand that this threat to the media and erosion of press freedom is a precursor to the breakdown of all other democratic institutions and principles