Two Bloggers Arrested After Exposing MP

  • Microphones set up for a press conference in Nairobi on Thursday, February 20, 2020.
    Microphones set up for a press conference in Nairobi on Thursday, February 20, 2020.
    Kenyans.co.ke
  • Police on Wednesday, August 19, arrested Jack Okinyi and Milton Were after publishing an article about an MP who is alleged to have fraudulently won a tender to construct roads.

    The two bloggers were grilled by police officers over the article on stalled road construction projects in the Nairobi Metropolitan Area.

    Okinyi who works for Business Illustrated and Were of Kenya Today claimed that the MP's wife alongside another man were responsible for misappropriating funds set aside for the road construction.

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    A Section of Ngong road Closed Due to ongoing construction on Wednesday, March 4, 2020
    File

    Speaking to Kenyans.co.ke, Lolyne Ongeri, a communications executive for the Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE) confirmed the arrests but noted that investigations were still going on.

    "We are still following up on that. We do not have much information on the arrests. Yes we have heard of it, but we are still conducting our investigations on the incident.

    "We will release a statement once we have gathered enough information about the arrests," she stated.

    According to reports, the two were arrested after being lured to a hotel in Upper Hill, Nairobi with Okinyi being driven to Mlolongo where he was roughed up.

    Were was later arrested and the two were taken to Capitol Hill Police Station where they were further grilled on the published article.

    The two bloggers maintain that the story is factual and had sources from contractors at Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA).

    Okinyi and Were claimed that the company that was awarded the contract did not meet the required standards as outlined by KURA. 

    They also claimed the company was responsible for shoddy jobs leaving some of the projects incomplete and enjoys backing from high profile government officials.

    This comes at a time when the arrest of journalists and bloggers has been on the rise with the most high-profile case being the incarceration of former NTV journalist Yassin Juma in Ethiopia

    On Wednesday, August 19, journalists were barred from covering the appearance of Interior CS Fred Matiang'i before the Senate Security Committee over the arrest of three senators. 

    “What are you doing here, I don’t remember inviting you here, go back we will call you later,” committe chair Senator Yusuf Haji reportedly said.

    Journalists docked at a media center while covering an event.
    Journalists docked at a media centre while covering an event.
    Twitter