Nairobi — Trade and Industrialization Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria has yet again insulted the media blatantly ignoring a high court order that gagged him against using slanderous phrases against the media.
During a food distribution event in Muranga, he referred the media as prostitutes and saying he will not be cowed to give the media a taste of their own medicine.
“I said recently an arrow in the night…these prostitutes from the media, how they come at me is how I will respond to them. The way they feel hurt when I call them that, is the same way we are hurt when they wrongly accuse us…and they should give us time to work, they were with the previous government for 10 years,” he said.
The High Court issued an injunction forbidding Kuria from using disrespectful or slanderous phrases toward any media outlet.
Justice Lawrence Mugambi sitting at the Milimani Law Courts issued the orders on Wednesday in an application filed by one Charles Mugane, a human rights defender and advocate of the High Court.
Justice Mugambi asserted that pending the determination of the suit, Kuria is restrained “from uttering or expressing any belittling, condescending, disdainful words against any Media Practitioner by the meaning of Article 34 of the constitution howsoever and whatsoever.”
The judge ordered that the CS and the Attorney General be served within three days, and that they respond within seven days with the matter slated for mention on July 24.
Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua Friday said the media fraternity should brace for attacks from the political class terming the Moses Kuria-led onslaught against the press as an attempt to cure ‘lies’.
While referring to the Trade Cabinet Secretary’s assertion of media bias and targeted disinformation, Gachagua said there’s more to come.
“They (media) must be accountable for what they write and what they say and if they write lies, they must be countered with facts,” Gachagua’s remarked in reference to Kuria’s escalating war with the Nation Media Group (NMG).
“There is nobody who is immune to accountability,” he added.
Gachagua who was addressing a congregations at the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) during the institution’s 40th graduation ceremony said President William Ruto’s administration will insist on holding the media accountable even as it upholds press freedom.
“Moses Kuria has asked just three questions and you are all over crying. You have seen nothing. We want to ask leaders in this country to join Moses Kuria to hold the press to account,” he said.
Gachagua scoffed at the media for what he termed as a sustained onslaught against Ruto’s administration and its officials saying tables will turn.
“Welcome to the world of Moses Kuria because no situation is permanent. And I’m so happy with the way media has reacted to criticism. It’s good you are feeling the way we feel. You have been hitting us left, right and centre but nobody has ever held you to account,” he said.
Gachagua also reacted to a gag order issued by the court against Kuria saying the courts should equally retrain the press whenever petitioned by aggrieved parties.
“The same way the courts have been persuaded to gag Moses Kuria from holding the press to account, I want the same courts, when leaders go to ask them to restrain the media, the same court must give same orders so that we are fair,” said Kuria.