Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i is demanding an apology from the Standard Group over an article on one of its newspaper gossip columns, which he claims implicated him in an extramarital affair scandal.
Though the article did not mention Matiang’i by name, through his spokesman Mwenda Njoka, the CS says its detailed description left no doubt as to who it was referring to.
“Although your newspaper did not mention by name the Cabinet Secretary in question, the description, viewed against the adjectives your newspaper has used in the past to describe Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i, leaves no doubt that the CS being mentioned in the article is none other than Dr Fred Matiang’i,” Njoka says in his demand letter.
“In articles previously published in your newspaper, you have used adjectives such as “no-nonsense, outspoken and strong Christian” to describe CS Matiang’i. It is for this reason that we have reason to believe that the CS your article was disparagingly referring to is Dr. Matiang’i,” he adds.
According to Njoka, some bloggers have gone ahead to identify him as the CS referred to in the article, which claimed an unidentified CS was embroiled in a scandal involving a lady they worship with in church.
According to the article, the CS in question has even bought a house for the lady and that the affair was smoked out by his wife, who confronted her mother, who is a co-church choir member, and that the women even confirmed they had an affair with her husband.
Njoka says the net effect of the article was to defame, disparage and vilify an innocent public servant in the eyes of his peers, family and right-thinking members of the public contrary to Sections 1(1), (8) and (9) of the Code of Conduct for the Practice of Journalism in Kenya.
The demand letter came as controversial blogger Cyprian Nyakundi claimed the CS dispatched nine detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations in three cars to his house to arrest him after he authored a story identifying him as the CS in question.
Dr Matiang’i is a staunch Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) follower and church elder.
Here is the article that was published in the Standard:
Here is Mwenda Njoka’s demand letter: