The National Gender and Equality Commission has noted the multiple breaches of the code of conduct for the practice of journalism in Kenya as well as the programming code committed by Homeboyz Radio during one of their breakfast shows on March 25, 2021.
The Commission welcomes the administrative actions taken by Homeboyz Radio against its staff as well as the sanctions imposed by the industry regulators; the Media Council of Kenya and the Communications Authority of Kenya. In line with these directives, we wish to state as follows:-
- We condemn the use of sexist, derogatory and dehumanizing language in the reportage and commentary of media content and especially when it concerns victims of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence. This must cease forthwith.
- The Commission cautions against the mainstreaming of the Rape Culture that is slowly gaining currency in which sexual violence is being normalized and excused in the media and popular culture. Rape culture is being propagated through the use of misogynistic language, the objectification of women’s bodies, and the glamorization of sexual violence, hence creating a society that disregards women’s rights and safety. This form of discrimination is prohibited under Article 27 of the Constitution of Kenya 2010.
- We welcome the condemnation and unequivocal stand taken by individual and corporate citizens against normalization of the Rape Culture by the media and celebrities.
- We call for an expeditious determination of the victim’s case pending in court and justice be served on the perpetrator.
- That the Media Council of Kenya which is the body mandated to promote and enhance ethical and professional standards amongst journalists and media enterprises does ensure compliance with the Code of Conduct for the practice of journalism in Kenya by all Journalists and Media Houses at all times.
- That the Management of Homeboyz Radio complies in full with the sanctions imposed by the Media Council of Kenya and the Communications Authority of Kenya and files a compliance report with NGEC within one month from the issuance of this advisory.
It is our considered view that Journalists and media enterprises play a critical role in not only raising awareness of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence but in countering stereotypes and outdated attitudes that may persist on the issue. For this reason, we urge media practitioners to use their venerated space to inform, educate the public on the dangers of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence and speak against harmful practices.