Zubeida Kananu Picked to Moderate Another Debate Session

  • KTN News Presenter Zubeida Koome.
    KTN News Presenter, Zubeida Koome.
    Zubeida Koome
  • KTN News anchor, Zubeida Kananu Koome, has been picked for the second time to moderate the 2022 Deputy Presidential Debate slated for Tuesday, July 19, at the Catholic University for Eastern Africa (CUEA).

    In a press statement released by the Presidential Debates Secretariat on Tuesday, July 19, Zubeida will moderate the debate alongside Citizen TV's Francis Gachuri in the first debate that will feature candidates who have polled less than five percent in three recent opinion polls (Roots party's Justina Wamae and Agano's Ruth Mutua).

    The secretariat announced the changes replacing TV47's Linda Alela and KBC's John Jacob Kioria, who had been primed to moderate the session. 

    KTN News Presenter Zubeida Koome strikes a pose on KTN News Studios
    KTN News Presenter Zubeida Koome strikes a pose on KTN News Studios.
    Zubeida Koome

    "The moderators have been selected based on a rigorous criteria that abides to, among other things, the principles of impartiality, fairness and objectivity, a strong understanding of the Kenyan political landscape and the major issues of this election," read part of the statement. 

    The Secretariat confirmed that the questions will be selected in a fair manner and will not be shared amongst the candidates. 

    "We reiterate that under the Presidential Debates Guidelines, the moderators will select the questions to be asked, and shall not share the same with the candidates. They will not meet with any of the campaign teams or the candidates."

    The second debate, involving candidates who have polled above five percent in three recent opinion polls, will still be moderated by Sophia Wanuna of KTN News and James Smart of NTV. This will involve Kenya Kwanza's Rigathi Gachagua and Azimio la Umoja's Martha Karua. 

    Citizen TV's Trevor Ombija will moderate the panel discussions for both debates. 

    This will be the second time that Zubeida will moderate a debate after the Nairobi gubernatorial one that led to a heated exchange between the journalist and Nairobi Senator, Johnson Arthur Sakaja.

    The exchange between the duo elicited mixed reactions from Kenyans online as some poked holes into Zubeida's choice of questions while others defended her conduct during the session. 

    "Azimio la Umoja candidate Polycarp Igathe cast aspersions on Sakaja Johnson's identity and Zubeida Kananu gave the Senator an opportunity to respond. I think Sakaja should have kept his calm, charming demeanor and responded during the Nairobi gubernatorial debate.

    "Some of you calling Zubeida unprintable names here is unfair. She was doing her job the best way she could at that moment. There are better ways of showing dissatisfaction in how someone, anyone handles an issue. Critique to build not to tear down," Citizen TV's Mashirima Kapombe weighed in on the matter. 

    UDA running mate Rigathi Gachagua, Kenya Editors Gucsild Chairman Cl (1).jpg
    UDA running mate Rigathi Gachagua at CUEA for the Deputy Presidential Debate briefing on Monday, July 18, 2022.