Senegal: CPJ condemns detention of Kenyan journalist

Dakar, Senegal (PANA) - The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has condemned the arrest of a Kenyan journalist, John Ngirachu, who has been in custody for failing to reveal his sources of a report to the authorities.

In a statement made available to PANA in Dakar, CPJ said Kenyan authorities arrested Ngirachu on Tuesday evening and demanded that he revealed his sources for a report on alleged procurement irregularities by the interior ministry.

The journalist's report was said to be based on proceedings at Kenya's National Assembly.

"The protection of sources is a fundamental principle of journalism and a critical condition for press freedom in a democracy," remarked CPJ's East Africa representative Tom Rhodes.

"We are appalled that Kenyan authorities would contemplate arresting a journalist for doing his job, let alone threaten to hold him until he reveals his sources."

According to the statement, Ngirachu is being held at the headquarters of the Department of Criminal Investigations in Nairobi and has not been charged.

The journalist was arrested while CPJ's Africa program coordinator Sue Valentine was visiting Kenya to consult editors on the state of press freedom and meet with information ministry representatives.

"In July, CPJ released a special report on Kenya's troubled press freedom record and the government at first dismissed the report's findings, but in a subsequent joint press conference with CPJ, the Cabinet Secretary for Information, Communication and Technology, Fred Matiang'I, said 'nothing will tempt us to encroach on press freedom,'" the statement noted.
-0- PANA MLJ/MA 11Nov2015

11 november 2015 12:33:07

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