Why DP Ruto, Governors and MPs can be punished for blocking Kenyans on social media

No State official should block Kenyans on social media

Why DP William Ruto, Governors, CSs, MPs and State Corporations can be fined for blocking Kenyans on social media

The Office of the Ombudsman has clarified that it is against the law for any state official or state organ to block a Kenyan on its social media platforms.

In an interactive session with Kenyans on Twitter, the Commission on Administrative Justice clarified that blocking Kenyans on social media is equivalent to denying them access to information, an offence that attracts a fine of Sh1 million.

"The various institutions use social media to publish and share public information hence no user should be blocked for asking questions.

"If the institution has evidence to show that a user has posted inappropriate information, then there are other laws to deal with that. Blocking a user denies them access to information shared on those platforms which are public information," the Ombudsman tweeted.

Kenya Power blocking Kenyans on Twitter

Kenyans highlighted @KenyaPower_Care as one of the Twitter handles that has been blocking customers when they raise queries.

"As usual I'm complaining again about Kenya Power's poor customer service. This time, however, I can't contact them because I just realized they blocked me on Twitter," one user complained to the Ombudsman.

Among those who have also been highlighted for blocking Kenyans are Deputy President William Ruto and Transport CS James Macharia who was sued by blogger Robert Alai for blocking him on Twitter.

Section 4 of the Information Act 2016 reads: "Subject to this Act, every citizen's right to access information is not affected by any reason the person gives for seeking access or the public entity's belief as to what are the person's reasons for seeking access."

The Act further recommends a Sh1 million fine as punishment for committing the offence.

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