Sunday Nation News Editor Mugumo Munene and Investigations Editor Andrew Teyie have been sacked in unclear circumstances, sending shock waves among journalists at the country’s largest circulating newspaper.
The two were handed letters declaring them redundant today. Mr Mugumo has been one of NMG’s most colourful journalists and his appointment as news editor of the Sunday Nation was seen as reward for nearly two decades of hard work and commitment on the Daily Nation.
Mugumo is an Alfred Friendly Press Fellow and reported for the Kansas City Star in Kansas City Missouri in 2007. A graduate of the University of Nairobi, he has also trained in journalism at the Poynter Institute in St Petersburg Florida, according to a profile on the NMG website. He is reputed for his established sources in government and the political arena.
Mr Teyie, on the other hand, is a former Standard journalist, who joined NMG in May 2013 from Radio Africa Group where he was an investigations editor at the Star newspaper.
Incidentally, the duo’s sacking came on the day Public Editor Peter Mwaura restated that NMG operates a policy of zero-tolerance to “brown envelope” journalism.
In his weekly column in which he highlighted what action the media house took in relation to a complaint by police officers in Molo following an attempt by a freelance cameraman masquerading as a Nation staffer to extort them to “kill” footage of them soliciting bribes, Mr Mwaura noted that last year, NMG ran a series of advertisements that made its anti-graft stance clear.
The media house regularly runs the integrity campaigns that enlighten the public on the editorial process, including free coverage of news. “We would like to emphasise that NMG editors, reporters, correspondents, and photographers are expressly barred from soliciting, accepting money or any form of payment or inducement for publication of news, opinion, or features,” the adverts read in part.
Reports from Nation Centre indicate that the Sunday Nation team recently fell out with Nation Media Group Editor in Chief Tom Mshindi after he pulled down a story about corruption at the Kenya School of Government. It’s said the article, which detailed misuse of funds on a staff trip to Mombasa, had already been laid out on the page but Mr Mshindi intervened and had it killed. It is not clear why he took that decision. Eventually, the story disappeared from the Nation news management system.
Also, the management has been probing claims that some Ksh7 million in form of proceeds from the National Youth Service (NYS) scandal was funnelled to some Nation journalists close to former Devolution Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru.
Recently, Nation fired its Special Projects Managing Editor Denis Galava over a stinging editorial he wrote critical of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s performance last year for allegedly failing to follow the editorial policy. And in another interesting twist, Daily Nation Group Managing Editor Mutuma Mathiu, in his column today, complained that he and another top editor on Wednesday evening received threats from a senior security official over a story that was to run in the Thursday edition.
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