Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ) Condemns Non-Payment of Salaries to Media Workers

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Of particular concern are the distressing circumstances at three prominent media houses:

Standard Group PLC
Mediamax
Radio Africa Group

Erick Oduor Secretary-General Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ)/KUJ FB

The Kenya Union of Journalists (KUJ) is deeply concerned over the persistent non-payment of salaries to journalists and media workers by several media houses in Kenya.

This crisis has reached an alarming level and poses a significant threat to media freedom and fundamental human rights in the country.

Of particular concern are the distressing circumstances at three prominent media houses:

  • Standard Group PLC
  • Mediamax
  • Radio Africa Group

These media entities have failed to remunerate their staff and correspondents for an alarming period of up to ten months, resulting in severe financial hardship.

“The KUJ is deeply concerned by the persistent non-payment of salaries to journalists and media workers by several media houses in Kenya,” said Erick Oduor, Secretary-General of KUJ. “This crisis has reached an alarming level and is inflicting immense hardship on journalists and their families.”

The KUJ has documented cases of journalists who have not been paid for up to ten months. These journalists are struggling to meet their basic needs, including food, housing, and education for their children.

“The delayed and non-payment of salaries is a violation of the Employment Act and is a serious threat to media freedom,” said Oduor. “Journalists cannot be expected to report freely and independently if they are worried about how they are going to put food on the table.”

The KUJ is calling on the government to take immediate action to address this crisis. The KUJ demands that the government:

  • Expeditiously clear all pending bills owed to media houses
  • Discontinue using advertising as a tool to control or silence the media
  • Incorporate corporate governance considerations into the criteria for awarding contracts to companies

The KUJ is also calling on media houses to fulfill their obligations to their employees and ensure timely payment of salaries. The KUJ demands that media houses:

  • Adhere strictly to the Employment Act
  • Provide verifiable proof of salary payments before accessing government advertising

Furthermore, the KUJ urges Parliament to enact legislation that establishes a minimum wage for journalists and creates a Media Development Fund to support media development initiatives in Kenya.

“The welfare of journalists is paramount to the existence of a free and independent media,” said Oduor. “We will not tolerate any attempts to silence or intimidate journalists through financial hardship. We stand in unwavering solidarity with our members and will continue to fight for their rights.”

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