In the run-up to the March 2013 elections, tensions ran high among local journalists, who feared a repeat of the violent aftermath of the disputed 2007 vote in which the press was targeted and harassed in connection with news coverage. Several journalists were threatened or attacked throughout 2012 in reprisal for their reporting on official corruption. CPJ found that most of the anti-press episodes took place in Western Kenya. The installation of fiber-optic cable networks drove up the number of Internet users. With its Internet penetration having doubled since 2010, Kenya boasted the highest rate in East Africa. The country also leads East Africa in mobile phone use with 29 million clients, according to International Telecommunication Union data. Kenya continued to be the main regional refuge for journalists fleeing their home countries in fear of attack or imprisonment. Since 2007, at least 52 journalists have resettled in Kenya, but often under extreme hardship.
At least 15 journalists were threatened or attacked in Kenya, 10 of them in connection with their coverage of corruption-related issues, according to CPJ research.
|67%||Coverage of corruption-related reporting|
|20%||Coverage of police operations|
|13%||Coverage of local politics|
According to CPJ research, the majority of attacks and threats against the press occurred in small towns instead of cities. Nearly half the attacks took place in Western Kenya.
East Africa has the highest number of exiled journalists in the world, according to CPJ research. Many flee to Kenya, which ranks second worldwide among destinations for exiled journalists.
Kenya leads the East African region in Internet penetration, according to the most recent data from the International Telecommunication Union, or ITU.
Do you believe the free flow of information must be protected? Sign the #RightToReport petition and demand that President Obama immediately:
1. Issue a presidential policy directive prohibiting the hacking and surveillance of journalists and media organizations.
2. Limit aggressive prosecutions that ensnare journalists and intimidate whistleblowers.
3. Prevent the harassment of journalists at the U.S. border.
Or click here to see the full petition, and join leading journalists like Christiane Amanpour, The Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger, Editor of the AP Kathleen Carroll, and Arianna Huffington in signing on.