The Nation Media Group has appointed veteran journalist Peter Mwaura as its first-ever Public Editor.
He will operate independently and shall be the readers’ representative, handling complaints on accuracy, fairness, balance and ethical issues in news-gathering and presentation.
NMG Group Chief Executive Officer Linus Gitahi said Mr Mwaura was no stranger to the Nation, having worked as an Assistant Editor and Editor-in-Chief of Nation Newspapers — as NMG was then called — in the early 1970s and 1980s, and has been a regular columnist since 2003.
“Nor is he a stranger to complaints about the media, having served for six years as a Commissioner of the Complaints Commission of the Media Council of Kenya from 2008 to 2014.
“It will be his task to ensure the NMG is transparent, accessible and accountable to its readers and that it lives up to its editorial guidelines and Kenya’s Code of conduct for the Practice of Journalism,” Mr Gitahi said.
“He will also inform the public on the journalism process, as well as the challenges and responsibilities of the media in a democratic society,” the CEO said.
He said the appointment was NMG’s commitment to self-regulation based on the highest standards of journalism and ethical conduct, and a manifestation of its willingness to open itself to criticism.
Initially, the Public Editor will monitor NMG’s print platforms in Kenya, including the Daily Nation, Saturday Nation, The East African, Taifa Leo, Taifa Jumapili, and Business Daily.
In time, other NMG publications in East Africa, as well as the news departments of its broadcast platforms, will be brought under the purview of the office of the Public Editor.
Mr Mwaura has been engaged on a two-year contract. He will report to the NMG Editorial Board Committee, which has oversight responsibility on editorial matters.
Mr Mwaura welcomed the appointment, saying: “My job will be to listen and look into your criticisms about the way the Nation publications cover and report news. I will make my recommendations to the editors and reporters based on my assessment of your criticisms.”
Send your complaints, grievances, or suggestions to public [email protected] or call 3288000, mobile 0721989264 or visit Mr Mwaura at Nation Centre in Nairobi.