Headlines must deliver what they promise

Daily Nation Readers

Nandi County residents read a copy of the Daily Nation at Meteitei Trading Centre. Headlines should be attractive, yes, however the story beneath the headline should deliver what the headline has promised.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The headline, “Revealed: Raila’s new strategy to counter Ruto” caught my eye as I was scrolling through Nation.Africa on Wednesday, January 31. After clicking this headline, I was led to a story with still a captivating headline: “Raila Odinga’s new strategy to counter President Ruto taxes.”

But upon reading the story I was disappointed to find out that no “new strategy” was revealed in the article as promised by the headline.

The story was about the “maandamano strategy” that Azimio undertook last year and not a new strategy. I expected a well-detailed new strategy by the Azimio team to counter the President’s taxes.

The word “new’” in the headline was misleading. Headlines should be attractive, yes, however the story beneath the headline should deliver what the headline has promised.

— Daniel Kariuki, Bungoma


Reporter mistaken on the housing levy

I refer to the story, “It is a delicate balancing act for MPs on Affordable Housing Bill” by Samwel Owino published in the Sunday Nation of January 28. The following passage appeared in the story: ‘’The Affordable Housing Bill 2023, which has already undergone first reading came to the floor of the House last year following a High Court Order that declared the housing levy imposed only on employees in the informal sector as unconstitutional and unfair’’.

The journalist misquotes what the High Court observed on November 30, 2023. The court ruled the housing levy is discriminatory hence unconstitutional because it levied only the formal sector employees. Could this be a case of news literacy? Shouldn’t journalists covering issues be thoroughly conversant with the background, facts and the realities of the issues they are covering? I strongly believe Samuel Owino didn’t read the court judgement of November 30 or even the news covering that judgment. The misleading factual error has not been corrected. For somebody who has not been following the furore on the housing levy he could actually believe that the informal sector workers have been paying the housing levy.

— Njoroge Waweru


Jazeera overshadowed local media

The Al Jazeera English channel widely reported the inferno in Embakasi that claimed several lives and injured hundreds of residents. Its Nairobi correspondent extensively interviewing victims. The news agency overshadowing the local media.

— Alnashir D Walji, Nairobi


‘Letters to the Editor’ and ‘Opinion’ pieces

I’m a once-in-a-while “Letters to the editor” writer. But I’ve never known the difference between “Letters to the editor” and “Opinion”. What I know is that we send both to the same news medium and are accorded space in the same newspaper, for the same readership. How does one transit from “Letters to the Editor” to “Opinion”?

— Kabaria Ole Muturi