As President William Ruto continues to organize his government, pro-Azimio la Umoja media houses such as Royal Media Services (RMS) have started feeling the heat.
During the campaign period, Citizen TV was accused of favoring Azimio leader Raila Odinga and denying Ruto a fair coverage of the campaigns.
In fact, during the votes-tallying and verification period, Citizen TV was used as the parallel tallying center for Azimio.
Now, with just three months after the conclusion of the August 8 General Elections, the Kenya Kwanza government is allegedly going after top journalists at RMS.
According to Business Today, an insider at the SK Macharia-owned media house intimated that editorial director Linus Kaikai, news anchor Yvonne Okwara and reporter Stephen Letoo are the prime targets.
Kaikai joined RMS in 2018 following his exit from Nation Media Group where he served as NTV General Manager.
Before joining NTV, he had worked for KTN where he served as Managing Editor in charge of Quality and Product Development until 2009.
Kaikai currently serves as editorial director following Joe Ageyo’s exit.
The government is allegedly going after the journalist for favoring Azimio on his weekly show, News Gang, which he hosts alongside Yvonne Okwara, Jamilla Mohammed and Francis Gachuri.
The media personality boasts over 13 years in both radio and television.
Okwara is currently a Senior News Anchor and Editor in charge of Research and Planning and a media consultant for Kenya’s National Defence College and sits on the ENACTUS Business Advisory Council.
According to Business Today, she is targeted for how she conducted the Presidential Debate with insider reports indicating that the news anchor was picked to interview Ruto on purpose.
It is also alleged that following the debate, Kenya Kwanza deployed undercover agents to trail the news anchor to establish any contact between her and Azimio officials.
“It is not clear if they picked any leads but she would be trailed as soon as she left the newsroom to her house,” Business Today quoted a source.
Letoo is a senior political affairs journalist, presenter and commentator working at the SK Macharia-owned TV station.
The public has at some point called him a partisan journalist and this was evident during the electioneering period when he only covered Azimio campaigns.
It is for this case that the government is unleashing its wrath on him.
However, according to him, it comes with the territory.
“With politics, all these accusations of being pro-government or opposition emerge. Unfortunately, it is how we are judged by our audiences. During elections people associated me with the NASA coalition while my colleague Jackie Maribe was accused of being pro-jubilee
“But our residents are directed by contacts and calendar of events, it makes it difficult for them to get information since politicians brief trusted reporters consistently
The Kenya Kwanza administration is demanding the firing of the aforementioned journalists.
The dismissal of the three from RMS is among conditions set by Ruto in exchange of government backing and other deals such as advertising.