Back in December, it was announced the Kenyan parliament would have control over the television cameras covering the house.
The new rules propose control not only the angle of the shot, but what was actually shown, as all parliamentary broadcasts would go through a new Parliamentary Broadcast Unit (PBU).
There is no doubt, as the secretary general of the Journalists Association in Kenya (JAK), Martin Gitau, quite rightly said, this is an infringement on the freedom of the press.
However, one wonders how successful this proposed infringement will be. After all, the current Kenyan president, Mwai Kibaki, seems to be having a little trouble controlling his own wife’s mouth, let alone the entirety of the free press.
The president’s wife, Lucy Kibaki, has expressed outrage in the wake of a fire which killed 120 people last Saturday. This would probably be fine in itself, but her sentiments are in exact opposition to those of her 77-year-old husband.
The row erupted over a statement by Minister for Security, George Saitoti, in which he claimed the death toll was worsened by poor Kenyans scrabbling for the spilt oil and, therefore, they needed to learn a lesson. While President Kibaki has come out in support of his minister, his wife clearly had other ideas.
The First Lady asked: “How can dead people learn a lesson?”.
It is a valid point. The rant continued: “If it was a woman in the ministry of internal security, she would have stopped these accidents.”
As a woman, I feel this is yet another valid point.
There are numerous questions which can be raised from these events: the safety of the tankers, why some are so poverty-stricken they throw themselves into danger for the possibilty of a little money and how on earth someone with so little feeling for his people has been elected to serve his country. But I feel the most important question needs to be: will Michelle Obama ever be called to do this?