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Jalang'o & Senator Chesang' go after Weekly Citizen tabloid

Jalang'o & Senator Chesang' go after Weekly Citizen tabloid for defamation

A collage of Lang'ata MP Jalang'o and Trans Nzoia Senator Allan Chesang

Lang'ata Member of Parliament Jalang'o, and Trans Nzoia Senator, Allan Chesang', have gone after Weekly Citizen, a Kenyan tabloid, over a defamatory story published in its latest issue.

Weekly Citizen ran a story linking Jalang'o, Chesang' to fraud, which the two legislators have vehemently denied as baseless.

The Trans Nzoia senator threatened to sue the publication for defamation and libel, while Jalang’o vowed to teach the publication a lesson.

"Rogue media must be dealt with! After the steps I want to take against Citizen Weekly, I don't think they will ever sit down and write a defamatory story on anyone again then call to extort you in the name of we will clean your name! I'll not fall for that nonsense! Good day!" the Lang’ata MP wrote.

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According to the cease and desist letter sent to the publication by Chesang’s lawyers, the senator demanded a retraction of the story.

The publication is owned by Headlink Publishers Limited which has been the subject of several court cases.

In one of the past cases filed against the media house, the publication was ordered to pay Sh20 million to former Planning Minister Henry Obwocha for publishing a defamatory story in the Weekly Citizen in May 2011.

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The story claimed that Obwocha misused the Constituency Development Fund and accused him of misappropriating Sh20m for CDF.

Lady Justice Roselyn Ougo ruled that the article was malicious and meant to demean Obwocha's character and that the publishers did not make any apology or amends even after he brought to their attention the true position of the allegations.

Defamation in Kenya refers to making statements that damage another party's reputation, which can take the form of written statements (libel) or spoken defamatory statements (slander).

Defamation was previously criminal and civil in nature, but the criminal element of defamation was declared unconstitutional in 2017.

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