SOCIAL MEDIA: How MPs are using bloggers to soil rivals
An MP is accusing some of her colleagues of using bloggers to tarnish the names of fellow leaders.
According to Nyeri Town MP Esther Murugi, some politicians were using bloggers to spread malicious messages about their rivals.
Ms Murugi said that she has been a victim of a false message which recently circulated on WhatsApp.
“I am not for the use of bloggers in campaigns because people are taking it too far,” she said.
According to her, Kenyans should be prepared for more of these insults as the country gears up for the 2017 elections.
Last month, a 25-year-old blogger was charged with posting abusive messages on her Facebook page accusing Governor Nderitu Gachagua’s brother of misusing public funds.
Martha Wanjiru Miano is alleged to have been poking holes into Mr Rigathi Gachagua’s integrity and also posting abusive posts about the county’s Communication County Director Jack Kabiru.
The governor’s brother is said to be eyeing the Mathira parliamentary seat and has being seen on several occasions contributing money for developments in the constituency.
She was released after lawyers lead by Kiharu MP Irungu Kangata challenged the procedure used by police to arrest her. Despite being released, police said they were still investigating the allegations.
Ms Murugi said the rampant misuse of social media by politicians is dangerous.
“Regulatory law on blogging will be hard because the law gives every citizen the liberty to express themselves freely and anyone can campaign,” she said
But Nyeri County Woman Representative Pricilla Nyokabi believes that social media is a great tool for campaigns as it reaches a large audience.
“I support the use of bloggers fully because social media is a powerful tool. But it should be done responsibly,” said Ms Nyokabi, adding that there is no need to formulate specific laws to regulate social media.
“The law has all those regulations against the spread of hate speech using social media so there is no need to formulate a new law,” she said.
According to lawyer Wahome Gikonyo, blogging is not a licence to committing crime.