Film Bill won’t gag me­dia, says KFCB boss Mu­tua

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics -

The Kenya Film Clas­si­fi­ca­tion Board CEO Ezekiel Mu­tua has dis­missed claims the pro­posed Films, Stage Plays and Pub­li­ca­tions Bill 2016 will gag the me­dia. He said the bill fo­cuses on re­view­ing Act Cap 222, a 1963 law, which was last amended in 2012 to con­form to mod­ern tech­nol­ogy. Me­dia prac­ti­tion­ers and civil so­ci­ety have op­posed the Bill, which con­trols me­dia content. The Kenya Union of Jour­nal­ists and Kisumu Jour­nal­ists’ Network termed the bill re­gres­sive, say­ing it threat­ens me­dia free­dom. They de­manded its with­drawal. KUJ sec­re­tary Eric Oduor said stake­hold­ers were not con­sulted dur­ing draft­ing and it con­tains clauses that will un­der­mine me­dia free­dom. Con­tentious is­sues in­clude li­cens­ing of mo­bile phones used in tak­ing pho­tos, which KJN chair­man Dick­son Odhiambo said will in­fringe on jour­nal­ists’ pri­vacy and in­ter­fere with their work. But Mu­tua said the law does not ad­dress con­tem­po­rary is­sues be­cause it was made when ICT was not ro­bust, hence the need to reg­u­late me­dia content.

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