Nation Media Group headquarters in Nairobi. PHOTO/COURTESY
By OUR CORRESPONDENT
Editors at the Aga Khan owned Nation Media Group rowed over the Daily Nation’s today headline “IEBC staff let off the hook as judges explain petition ruling.”
The story went ahead to say that:
“Electoral commissioners and staff were let off the hook for the numerous irregularities which caused the nullification of the August 8 presidential election.
The Supreme Court said it had found “systemic institutional problems” but no evidence of criminal intent or wrongdoing by the commissioners and secretariat staff.”
IEBC staff let off the hook as judges explain petition ruling
The Daily Nation headline attracted attacks from opposition supporters on social media who accused it of being pro-Jubilee Party.
The headline contradicted the newspaper’s editorial “IEBC has to get it right in repeat poll”that said:
“The detailed judgment of the Supreme Court of Kenya — which sternly demanded that elections must not only be won on numbers but also be conducted in strict obedience of the Constitution — will, no doubt, give rise to heated debate and legal polemics.”
Reports from the Twin-Towers as Nation Media Group’s headquarters is popularly known indicates that senior editors traded accusations over the headline that seemed to absolve IEBC staff from blame contrary to the Supreme Court detailed judgment.
According to legal experts the Supreme Court detailed judgement squarely blamed the electoral commission and its chairman Wafula Chebukati, for the failure of the presidential election.
In fact experts are warning that the Supreme Court judgement has put the country on a collision course towards a constitutional crisis.
The court’s full judgement says that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) failed to run a legal or constitutional poll.
Lawyers are now arguing that with the second ballot due by the end of October, the Supreme Court full judgement opens up the question of how the IEBC can be trusted to organise another national vote in the time available.
Controversial Nation Media Group Editorial Director, Mr Tom Mshindi, is said to have demanded an explanation from Daily Nation Managing Editor, Mr Mutuma Mathiu, over the headline debacle.
The latest developments comes at a time NMG was trying to mend fences with the National Super Alliance (NASA) after one of its kingpins lawyer James Orengo, had asked opposition supporters to boycott buying publications of the company over biasness against NASA.
The Daily Nation headline also contracted a commentary by the paper’s columnist, Mr Macharia Gaitho, who is also currently heading NMG’s Election Desk.
How inconsistent result forms shored up Raila’s petition
Developments at NMG are said to be giving His Highness The Aga Khan, the majority shareholder at the Group sleepless nights.
He is said to be planning a major shake-up at the media group that is expected to affect senior management and editorial staff according to sources within The Aga Khan Development Network-the firm that oversees all his investments in Africa.
Disgruntled editors at NMG accuse some of their colleagues of having thrown journalism tenets out of the window and had decided to auction their souls to the highest bidder to the detriment of investors in the company.
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