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State issues New Broadcasting Rules For All Radio, TV Stations

New broadcasting rules often emerge in response to evolving societal norms, technological advancements, or political considerations. They might address concerns such as media ownership concentration, the protection of minors from harmful content, ensuring diversity and impartiality in news reporting, or regulating advertising practices.

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By Victor MUJIDU

All kenyan Television stations and radios will have to adhere to new broadcasting rules published by the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA).

In a notice Tuesday April 2, the authority noted that it has been forced to review the programming code due to the evolving nature of standards and the need to protect consumers.

The rules are aimed at protecting consumers from content aimed at eroding societal values.

The 4th edition of the Programming Code for Broadcasting Services has modifications which demand all media outlets comply with the rules set forth by the Communication Authority when it comes to covering commercials and different types of content, including child, religious, and election-related content.

The new guidelines disallow children’s programmes that fostering violence, depicting inappropriate sexual subjects, streaming content that involves consumption of liquor or tobacco products unless an educational point is being made or in very exceptional cases if the dramatic context makes it absolutely necessary.

The regulations further mandate that no commercials for products or services that are unsuitable for children or that could injure them morally, psychologically, physically, or mentally may be shown during or next to programming.

Demonstrations of exorcism, occult rituals, the paranormal, and music videos with potentially dangerous lyrics and visuals for young viewers are among other content that the Communication Authority has blocked.

“Children are involved in programmes in a number of ways and programme makers must have due regard to their welfare at all times. Particular care should be taken to avoid causing any distress or alarm to children involved in programmes. Under no circumstances may children be put at physical or moral risk, for example, in factual programmes concerning criminal activity”, read the Programming Code 4th Edition in part.

The new regulations oblige media outlets to charge consistently for airtime allotted to politicians and political candidates during election coverage. On the same note, inciters and propagandists shall be identified through the words employed including the media house responsible with the shambolic announcements.

“Broadcasters shall ensure that political messages do not contain attacks on individuals, their families, ethnic background, race, religion or their associations”

The new regulations prohibit the broadcasting of religious programs that intentionally target, disparage, threaten, or tease other churches, faiths, sects, or groups, or their adherents, due to their religious convictions.

Limited live coverage will be provided for crime occurrences, such as hostage-taking, hijacking, and kidnapping. According to the authority, such acts could endanger the victims’ lives.

Additionally, media outlets are urged to prevent programmes that take advantage of viewers vulnerabilities.

“The identity of victims of crimes or crises in progress shall not be announced until the situation has been resolved or their names have been released by the authorities. The names of the fatalities should be released only when their next of kin have been notified or their names released by the authorities,” the guidelines outline.







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