Day Kibaki Called Me After KTN Fired Me

File Photo of KTN News Studios
File Photo of KTN News Studios

Former KTN editor Rose Lukalo has recalled a dramatic incident where she was fired for covering late President Mwai Kibaki as a lead news item.

Speaking during an interview on Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC), on Tuesday, April 26, Lukalo recalled an incident that dates back to 1991 when she got information from one of her sources that Kibaki was going to resign from his position in the late President Daniel Arap Moi's government.

Although Kibaki resigned from the government and even ditched the then ruling party KANU as she had reported, Lukalo narrated that she was fired barely three hours later after making public the information.

The communication expert noted that the announcement was interpreted as an upstage against the ruling regime.

Former KTN Editor Rose Lukalo during an interview on KBC on Tuesday April 26, 2022.
Former KTN Editor Rose Lukalo during an interview on KBC on Tuesday, April 26, 2022.

"He (news source) called in the morning wanting to give this information and at that time the practice was people got fired for non-allegiance and you will get fired on the 1oclock news. The Moi regime would let you go and have one hand upon you

In a way he upstaged Moi and I'm the one who delivered it. This happened in the morning and by 1:15 pm I was just told by the chairman to go home. I believe I was on the side of truth. I was essentially shocked for bringing in a scope," she recalled.

Lukalo further disclosed that following her sacking, Kibaki called her for a meeting to establish if she was doing well after the ordeal, recalling that she did not ask for a job.

"I don't how he got my number but Kibaki then called for a meeting and wanted to know if I was okay because of what had happened. I was touched and saw another side of him," she hailed the former President.

Lukalo detailed that during Moi's era, journalism was a tightly controlled environment and reporters were expected to be extra cautious with every bit of information they delivered to the audience.

Her ordeal was covered by the former Vice President Moody Awori in his autobiography, Riding on a Tiger, where he briefly narrated what transpired on that fateful day.

"On Christmas Eve 1991, Mwai Kibaki resigned from both KANU and the government and formed the Democratic Party (DP). At the time KTN was the only TV station in Kenya and young Rose Lukalo, the daughter of an old Mang’u schoolmate of mine, was in the studio. She made the mistake of announcing Mwai Kibaki’s resignation as the leading news item. She was immediately sacked, following ‘orders from above," Moody stated in his autobiography.

Being among the veteran journalists that had the opportunity to cover the late president, Lukalo described him as a person of excellence who transformed the country in different sectors.

File Photo of Former KTN Editor Rose Lukalo during a past event
File Photo of Former KTN Editor Rose Lukalo during a past event