Relief for Journalists Set to Be Fired at BBC, Standard Media Group – Kenyans.co.ke
The Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ) intervened on behalf of the journalists facing mass retrenchment from the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and Standard Media Group.
Appearing on NTV on Wednesday, October 19, KUJ Secretary-General, Eric Oduor noted that they had a series of meetings with the management of both media houses who affirmed to look into the plight of the journalists who would be affected.
Among these issues involved settling arrears owed to the employees, paying off any statutory deductions, and clearances with the Saccos as well as the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).
“We have received notice of redundancy, we demanded some issues be looked into and the management promised to pay any arrears to employees and statutory deductions.”
“They will also clear with the Sacco, tax authority and arrears that employees are owed,” Oduor stated.
He added that the BBC retrenchment exercise was currently conducted in London, United Kingdom and would shift to BBC Africa in mid-November.
“We have had meetings with the BBC management on how the process will be conducted. Right now they are concentrating on London and once they’re done, they will come to Africa mid-November, so that we will get full details of how many people will be affected,” Oduor pointed out.
In addition, the KUJ listed demands to Parliament over the alleged mistreatment of parliamentary journalists when covering the August House.
NTV‘s Planning Editor Roselyn Obala noted that the 13th Parliament had instituted new rules which primarily affected the journalists from effectively carrying out their mandate.
“The problem with the 13th parliament is that they came up with new rules of accrediting journalists to accessing parliament. That has not been the case in the past two Parliaments. Currently, they want journalists to cover specific Houses of Parliament.
“At NTV, we assign reporters to cover National Assembly alone and assign other journalists for Senate. They (Parliament) have a roll call for that, to me, I find it absurd,” she stated.
Among the issues that they urged the 13th Parliament to resolve included allowing journalists to freely access Parliament, allowing ease of access to documents, opportunities to interview the legislators within the premises and also a breakdown of the funds provided to the media industry by the government.