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BBC terminates Kenyan journalist Ciru Muriuki’s employment

Kenyan journalist Ciru Muriuki, on June 1, 2023, announced she had been laid off from the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).

In a vlog she posted online, she said she was retrenched after working with them for 5 years.

“Last year, they let the larger staff know that they wanted to take a different direction, to do a digital first approach and as a result, some roles would be made redundant. Right now, I am an unemployed journalist. One of the reasons why I wanted to talk about this is because people think that there is some kind of shame in acknowledging that you’ve lost your job. And…there isn’t. This is a really tough economic time and people I know- friends that I love and respect- same thing happened to them from the same organization. I know people that have been retrenched or laid off from other larger organizations, from local organizations as well. This is something that is happening across the world,” began Ms Muriuki.

She went on to say that the reason she wanted to talk about this was because there is life after losing full time employment as she cited people who’ve never been employed and are thriving in life by being entrepreneurs.

“I have been retrenched and I’m now fully throwing myself into content creation; and I hope to thrive there as well. So in the weeks moving forward, weekly, we’ll be talking about how to survive having lost your job or even though you’ve been unemployed and you’re trying to look for a job for the longest time, that’s something I also hope to be able to talk about. I feel like I have this platform for a reason and if I’m not using it to be useful and helpful, then I’m not really doing anything with it,” continued Ms Muriuki.

At BBC, Ms Muriuki was a broadcast journalist who hosted an interactive news show.

She said it was a shock to her system after receiving a regular paycheck for over 10 years and has had to make lifestyle adjustments and really think about how she’s spending money. She, however, said that this retrenchment opened her up to seeing the many opportunities that exist to make an income, including content creation and entrepreneurship.

Her retrenchment comes in the wake of other top Kenyan BBC employees leaving the organization. On May 23, Nairobi News reported that Ferdinand Omondi quit the BBC for greener pastures.

“Today, I close this wonderful chapter of my life at the BBC after 8 years. I have grown, I have learned, I have thrived. I leave with a grateful heart and fond memories. Storytelling is what I do best. And I’m excited for what the universe has next for me on my plate. My story continues,” said Ferdinand Omondi.

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