Kenyan journalist detained after writing about corruption

Tom Mshindi, the editor-in-chief of Daily Nation newspaper says senior reporter John Ngirachu, who wrote about corruption at Interior Ministry was arrested on Tuesday

Photo by: Reuters (Archive)
Photo by: Reuters (Archive)

Members of the General Service Unit policemen patrol a section of an over-pass

Kenyan police arrested a Kenyan Journalist, John Ngirachu, who wrote an article about the outrageous spending of the Interior Ministry in Daily Nation newspaper.

"John Ngirachu was arrested at parliament in Nairobi for reporting on procurement by the Interior ministry,"  The Daily Nation's parliamentary editor said on its website.

After the first explanations about the issue, it reported later that Ngirachu "has been released from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) headquarters after recording a statement in the presence of his two lawyers.''

Also, Tom Mshindi said Ngirachu's arrest is a kind of infringement on media freedom.

"This is, in our view, intimidation. We don't expect this government to resort to these kinds of strong-arm tactics to try and intimidate us,” he said.

Interior Ministry officially confirmed Ngirachu's arrest, but did not give more details about it.

Corruption is a big issue especially in recent days in Kenya where many people live in poverty. President Uhuru Kenyatta has promised to struggle poverty and corruption problem of his country.

Also, The US ambassador to the East African nation mentioned  some words about corruption in Kenya in this week.

"Corruption is a crisis in Kenya. As I have said frequently, it is undermining the country's future," Ambassador Robert Godec said.

"Corruption threatens Kenya's economic growth, the provision of government services, and security.It threatens the country's health care system. It must end." he added.

Also, Interior Minister Joseph Nkaissery criticised his arrest and stated that the story is "unacceptable" and said it was "calculated to harm the nation."

"(This is) increasingly taking the shape of a larger plot of economic sabotage", Interior Minister Nkaissery said.

Meanwhile Kenya's editors guild has some concerns about free media.

"If the statement is anything to go by, the arrest of journalist John Ngirachu is only the beginning of tougher times for the media and any other independent voices brave enough to raise questions on the corruption crisis that ails our country," said Linus Kaikai, the chairman of Kenya Editors Guild.

TRTWorld and agencies