BBC, the global broadcaster, has finally found a permanent replacement for Larry Madowo, who left the company to join its rival CNN. Last week, BBC officially appointed Zawadi Mudibo as Business Editor Africa on permanent terms.
Mr Mudibo, who was among three Kenyans billed to take up the job, had earlier been appointed to the position in acting capacity in what may have given him an advantage over his colleagues in the succession race.
It is understood that at least four other Kenyan Nairobi-based BBC journalists applied for the job when it was advertised in August. Mr Mudibo will now be in charge of over 40 journalists under the business segment, giving him a vantage position in Africa’s media industry.
Mr Mudibo is a bilingual (English and Kiswahili) broadcast journalist. Besides K24 and KTN, he also worked briefly as news editor and anchor at Foundation Media-owned WTV.
Larry Madowo left BBC Nairobi office in 2019 to study in the US but opted to settle there as BBC’s North America Correspondent in Washington, D.C., leaving the BBC Africa business editor position vacant.
In May this year, he took up a new position with CNN as the network’s Nairobi-based correspondent.
It has taken long to replace him since, it appears, there was no clear succession plan on the Africa business desk.
Other key Kenyan journalists at the BBC Africa business desk include Bonney Tunya, Peter Wakaba and Clare Muthengi. Wakaba and Clare had worked as Africa Business Editor with Mudibo on a rotational basis while Madowo was studying.
With Zawadi Mudibo at Business Desk, the BBC Kenyan team will now battle it out with their former colleague at CNN in terms of coverage especially as Kenya heads into a general election and African economies adjust to the post-Covid dispensation.