Three columnists who were among a group of eight that quit the Daily Nation over alleged State House influence at the Nation Media Group (NMG) on Thursday confirmed that they would be joining rival paper the Sunday Standard.
A full-page statement in the Standard welcomed Fr Gabriel Dolan, Maina Kiai and George Kegoro to the media house.
"After the NMG exodus, Gorge Kegoro, Maina Kiai and I join Makau Mutua et al join Standard Kenya," Dolan later tweeted.
The eight independent columnists who quit Nation on March 27 were Rasna Warah, Muthoni Wanyeki, Fr Gabriel Dolan, Maina Kiai, Gabrielle Lynch, George Kegoro, Nic Cheeseman and Kwamchetsi Makokha.
They released a hard-hitting statement declaring that recent happenings at NMG suggested state capture of the media.
[caption caption="Some of the columnists who quit NMG at a press conference on March 27, 2018"][/caption]
"Censoring individual columnists signals official intolerance for dissenting views, and suggests executive willingness to go to any length - even co-opting editors- to achieve its aims.
"It is also unacceptable that they should be deciding who can have a voice in publicly accessed spaces. A media organisation that tacitly supports such a position alienates itself from the public," the statement read in part.
They cited the company's decision to discontinue a popular column by opposition strategist David Ndii without an explanation as proof of the alleged capture.
The columnists also highlighted a decision by NMG to let the contract of famed cartoonist Godfrey Mwapembwa (Gado) lapse.
"We just felt we couldn't continue on this basis. People who have views considered to be against the establishment are being targeted," Kegoro told Kenyans.co.ke at the time.
[caption caption="The announcement in the Standard welcoming the columnists"][/caption]
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