There is need to amend the Kenya Information and Communication Act 2013 to ensure that no media and regulatory case goes to court before it is fully heard and determined by the tribunal.

The Multimedia Appeals Tribunal team was inaugurated today. The six member team chaired by William Oketch will resolve disputes against journalists and media enterprises, as well as adjudicate cases against decisions by the Communications Authority of Kenya and communications service providers.

The Tribunal created under the Kenya Information and Communication Act 2013 will deal with disputes arising from activities in the multimedia and telecommunication industry.

While inaugurating the tribunal at Teleposta Towers, Information, Communications and Technology (ICT) Cabinet Secretary Joe Mucheru assured the team of government’s support. “Let us grow Kenya, let us move the country forward and use the available huge opportunity to make Kenya an ICT hub,” said Mucheru.

The CS urged the tribunal to be fair and just in its ruling and provide a level playing field in the sector.

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Mr Oketch said the creation of the body is in line with international best practices that delink dispute settlement from the regulator. He further noted that the tribunal will instill indiscipline, ethical values and professionalism in journalism.

In his remarks, the Communications Authority of Kenya Director General Francis Wangusi said there is need to amend the Kenya Information and Communication Act 2013 to ensure that no media and regulatory case goes to court before it is fully heard and determined by the tribunal.

He noted that already there is a backlog of media and regulatory cases pending in court that need to be expedited.

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The members of the tribunal who include Brenda Akinyi, Isaiah Cherutich, Janet Wekesa and Ibrahim Mutembei were sworn in last Friday, June 16 at the High Court.

Present at the function were the Principal Secretary for Broadcasting and Telecommunication Mr Sammy Itemere and Chief Executive Officer Kenya Communications Secretariat Eng. Daniel Obam among others.

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