NASA strategist and controversial David Ndii is furious after he was informed his bimonthly column in the Saturday Nation had been stopped without his knowledge.
In a post on his Twitter handle, the economist reveals he only learnt about the fate of the column in BusinessToday. In the column, he wrote a series of articles critical of the Jubilee administration especially with regard to its handling of the economy, after writing to Nation Media Group chairman Wilfred Kiboro.
In his letter, Ndii said he had learnt from media reports that his contract as a columnist had been terminated but nobody had formally communicated to him about the same. Business Today was the first to report on the move two weeks ago.
He said Saturday Nation editor Ng’ang’a Mbugua had promised to email him a copy of a new contract but had not done so, adding he not only failed to do so but was not responding to his emails and text messages.
“I have an association with the NMG going back more than twenty years, and while the NMG is at liberty to end this relationship I think that it behoves a responsible corporate citizen of NMG’s stature to do this formally and courteously,” Ndii said in his email to Kiboro, which was also copied to Mbugua and Editor-in-Chief Tom Mshindi.
It was after this that Mbugua wrote to Ndii to inform his that his column had been suspended as part of a review of the op-ed pages of NMG’s platforms with a view to enhancing their relevance and utility value.
Its taken writing to the NMG Chairman to be told they’ve axed my column— and even then they don’t have the guts to say it straight. pic.twitter.com/DgQqXkloPg
— David Ndii (@DavidNdii) March 7, 2018
“This is part of quality control activities we undertake routinely. As part of this, the Saturday Nation will be temporarily suspending the publication of your column. We hope that we will be able to reinstate it at the end of the exercise. We wish to thank you for your contributions so far and look forward to further collaboration,” he said.
However, according to Ndii, NMG has stopped his column but fears openly admitting the same.
“It’s taken writing to the NMG Chairman to be told they’ve axed my column— and even then they don’t have the guts to say it straight,” he tweeted and attached copies of his correspondence with Kiboro and NMG editors.
In recent months, the media house has come under the spotlight for appearing to favour the national government in the process suppressing its critics.
In January, NMG called for applications from people who wish to contribute commentaries and opinion pieces for its platforms.
It is still unclear how many people responded to the call which coincided with a radical restructuring that pushed out several journalists including top editors and other managers.
Eric Obino, who was in charge of production and is seen as one of independent minds in NMG’s top echelons, has since made a comeback. He has returned to his former job of Managing Editor, Weekend Editions.