Kibaki signs Media Bill

President Mwai Kibaki. Photo/FILE

President Mwai Kibaki has signed into law the Communications Amendment Bill, 2008 ignoring protests by the media stakeholders.

In a statement to the media, Kibaki said he had received numerous appeals from the industry asking him not to assent to the bill.

"I have carefully considered the concerns that were raised by the media which mainly relate to Section 88 of the Kenya Communications Act, 1998 which gives the government power to restrict media operations during a state of emergency," he said.

Kibaki is now urging the key stakeholders in the media industry to address queries raised in Section 88 separately.

"This section is in fact contained in a separate Act, the Kenya Communications Act, 1998. Therefore, by refusing to assent to this Bill, I will not have addressed this concern of the media," he said.

The President noted that the Kenya Communications Amendment Bill, 2008 addresses issues critical to the country's economic development in regards to electronic transactions like M-PESA, which has employed over 12,000 Kenyans in a span of one year.

"Indeed, by and large, the regulation of the electronic transactions in Kenya creates room for the pursuit of the ideals of Vision 2030 while regulating the electronic media would promote and safeguard our culture, moral values and nationhood," he further stated.

The law also addresses regulation of the Business Processing and Outsourcing (BPO) sub sector, which has created over 5,000 jobs.


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