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Ruto's response to alleged threats made to KTN during anti-finance bill protests

KTN News announced that they received threats from authorities about a potential shutdown due to their coverage of the protests

KTN News faces shutdown threats
  • KTN News received threats from authorities due to their coverage of protests against the Finance Bill 2024
  • President Ruto denied exerting any pressure on the media and urged KTN News to make a formal report
  • Ruto stated the necessity of free media and emphasized his support for it

In a round table discussion with journalists from digital media on Sunday, June 30, President William Ruto addressed the allegations of government threats against Standard Media Group's KTN News.

The president strongly defended the necessity of a free media, while also urging media houses to act responsibly.

"I think if we have free media and it is not the one in Kenya then I don't think we have free media anywhere else in the world. In Kenya people report anything, everything, what is news, what is fake news, what is true, what is not true. I would really ask the media to act responsibly," Ruto stated.

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KTN News had previously announced that they received threats from authorities about a potential shutdown due to their coverage of the protests against the Finance Bill 2024.

The network emphasised its commitment to defending public interest and asserted that such threats would not intimidate it.

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Responding to these claims, President Ruto made it clear that he has not exerted any pressure on the media.

"There is no media house that I have called, there is no media person that I have called to tell them anything. I know very well the necessity of free media and I support free media wholeheartedly," he affirmed.

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President Ruto urged KTN News to make a formal report about the alleged threats so that the issue can be dealt with legally.

"KTN should make a formal report on who threatened them so that they can be dealt with in accordance with the law. Nobody should threaten any media personality for whatever reason, either for what they reported or on account of what they did," he emphasised.

The president also touched on the issue of police harassment towards journalists, acknowledging that media personnel have sometimes become victims during chaotic situations.

"Media have also become victims of some of the criminals on the streets. Media have also gotten into situations where their cameras are broken in the confusion, in the chaos, in the running around, and it's unfortunate," Ruto remarked.

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He encouraged journalists to report any instances of police harassment so that appropriate action can be taken.

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