Kenyan journalists are demanding an apology from deputy president William Ruto over harassment by his security detail.
The Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ), in a letter signed by secretary-general Erick Oduor, has petitioned the DP following two incidents of harassment which occurred in the past two months.
“The latest such incident took place on September 1, 2019 during a fundraiser at Kangata Catholic Church in Kirinyanga during which Nation Media Group journalist George Munene was manhandled and detained by your security detail without any cause,” Oduor says.
“You will also recall that on August 10, upon your orders, journalists covering the traditional wedding of Amos Ole Mpaka at Ng’ambo in Baringo were roughed up and assaulted by your security detail,” the letter states.
During the wedding ceremony in Baringo, DP Ruto reportedly shooed away journalists to give the crowd a clearer view of the speakers’ podium.
Ruto reportedly told the journalists that he was not there to address them, but rather members of the public gathered at the venue.
The journalists union also wants DP Ruto to assist it in pursuing legal action against the offenders.
“We demand an immediate apology from you as a state officer and an assurance that your office will assist the victims in pursuing legal redress. We also want an assurance that acts of impunity against journalists shall cease,” the union said in the letter.
The DP’s office is yet to comment on this petition.