>>BY YAYRA MIGYIKRA>>
The Council of Governors (CoG) and the Media Council of Kenya (MCK) have emphasized the vital role that the media plays in promoting devolution.
CoG ICT and Knowledge Management Committee Chair, Governor Wesley Rotich, and the MCK CEO David Omwoyo have vowed to support the media in its efforts to provide reputable coverage of the devolved units.
The two spoke in Mombasa before signing a Memorandum of Understanding that calls for strong collaboration between the media and county governments to distribute information from the counties.
Among other things, the MoU will work to improve the capacity-building of county communications and media employees, relations between county governments and journalists, and the creation of a training curriculum on devolution for the media from model practical perspectives in the County Governments.
“While it is within the rights of the media to highlight shortcomings of government and those in authority, they have an obligation to showcase successes and achievements after 10 years of devolution in Kenya. It is critical that Kenyans get access to timely relevant information from the counties,” said MCK CEO David Omwoyo.
According to him, the MOU aims to encourage information sharing and knowledge management among and within the devolved units.
He urged county governments to give journalists access to information, claiming that doing so would stop the spread of false information and avoidable squabbles that have frequently soured relations between the media and devolved units.
He also urged media to cover stories from the counties in a balanced manner.