By Prudence Minayo
The Kenyan media industry is a slippery affair. Journalists are fired at will and it takes grit to survive in this highly competitive career that has been hit hard by the advent of social media and eager bloggers who share news even before it has been sifted. Media owners are only eager to work with the very best journalists. Emmanuel Juma is one such good example who has remained relevant over the years. He is famed for the political satire show ‘Bulls Eye’, that airs every Friday on NTV after the prime time news.
This writer will focus on the journalist’s career as very little is out there on his private life.
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Emmanuel jump started his career at the state owned Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC), like many other veteran journalists in Kenya. He worked there for a while before joining the Kenya Television Network (KTN).
He worked at KTN as a reporter. While in KTN, he finessed the art of news gathering and reporting news. He used to run a program similar to Bull’s Eye which was named ‘Parting shot.’
In 2005, he moved to Nation Media Group where he worked as a reporter on NTV. It was here that his political show Bull’s Eye was born. The show was very prominent and aired on NTV every Friday. It was like a summary of various events touching on politics that occurred throughout the week. The compilation of the clips formed the highlight of NTV Friday News and that was one of the best ways to end the week. He also worked as the head of news and as a managing editor.
In January 2018, he was among the journalists who was fired by Nation Media Group along with other famous names like Lolanu Kalu who used to air the Malimwengu segment. This came as a surprise to many since the journalist was one of the pillars of the station having worked there for over ten years. NTV had cited redundancy as the major cause of the firing and the company also needed to improve their profits.
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Emmanuel Juma then went to work for the newly established Switch TV which was under Red Cross Society and was to rebrand to RedCross TV. A month after its launch, Juma left the station to re-join NTV.
According to Business Daily, after the restructuring NTV lost most of its presenters and reporters to Citizen TV, which raided its newsroom after hiring former NTV General Manager Linus Kaikai. According to the article, Juma’s return began to take shape in June 2018, about 6 months after being shown the door out of the station. It emerged that NMG was considering rehiring some of the TV journalists it had sacked in January to fill the plug left by the exit of the journalists it had hoped to rely on.
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