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Kenyan MP offers apology over hate speech on Facebook, Twitter

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MOSES KURIAGatundu South MP Moses Kuria has apologized for remarks on popular social media platforms where among other posts, he had attributed terrorism to certain communities in Kenya.

“My intention is not to create disunity. I stand for cohesion, I stand to have one indivisible Kenya and therefore to the extent that I attributed terrorism to specific communities or religions or tribes, I regret and apologise,” said Kuria.

Kuria was speaking at a press conference which was also attended by the National Cohesion and Integration Commission officials as well as the Law Society of Kenya on Monday.

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The MP appeared in court over hate speech after the LSK filed a complaint with the Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko and then Inspector General of Police David Kimaiythat detailed Kuria’s alleged posting of inciteful Facebook remarks targeting a specific community.

This was contrary to Section 13 of the National Cohesion and Integration Act makes it illegal to use threatening, abusive or insulting words, acts or materials liable to stir up ethnic hatred.

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The NCIC had also taken Kuria to court over the posts on his Facebook account which the Director of Public Prosecutions said amounted to hate speech and after LSK sued him, Kuria opted for reconciliation.

According to Morris Dzoro the NCIC’s Legal and Complaints Committee Chairman,the legislator will also apologise to the country via national newspapers which is part of the agreement to be presented to court on Tuesday.

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“We have used Article 159 (2) (c) of the Constitution which allows for the use of alternative means of dispute resolution including reconciliation, mediation, arbitration and traditional resolution,” said Dzoro.

The Gatundu South MP has since agreed to stop with similar posts.

“I want to call upon politicians to be very careful of what they say out there, because every action has a counter reaction equal and opposite. Even if I keep quiet and someone else goes out there and says Kenya belongs to two communities, it is an exercise in futility, so let’s all agree to stop,” he said when asked whether he will refrain from making controversial statements.

While the apology was welcomed by most people , on Twitter others felt that it was a slap on the wrist for the legislator who is known to be very careless in his remarks. Others felt that he was no different from a university student , Allan Wadi who was jailed over remarks similar to those of Moses Kuria despite the fact that he allegedly offered to apologise as well.

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Susan Mwenesi
Susan Mwenesi
Interested in business, technology and all things startups in Africa!

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