2018 was a remarkably involving year for the news industry. Some media personalities found themselves on the other side of things after they were caught in incidences that made them part of the headlines.
Ranging from scandals, media harassment incidences, promotions, and some other bizarre occurrences, kenyagist.com compiled a comprehensive report on newsmakers who made headlines in 2018.
To begin with, some journalists found themselves on the wrong side of the law after being involved in incidences that threatened to tear down their careers.
1. Jackie Maribe
Topping the list was Citizen TV news anchor Jackie Maribe who found herself mentioned in the scandal surrounding Monica Kimani’s murder due to her involvement with the alleged killer, Joseph Irungu, her fiance.
In an interesting turn of event, Maribe reported Monica’s death days before she was arrested in regards to purportedly aiding the killer.
Later, her fiance was arrested in connection to the police report he filed on a gunshot wound which is believed he inflicted on himself. Maribe was later apprehended on charges of colluding with Irungu to conceal evidence.
While Maribe was later released on a cash bail though she is not completely off the hook as she is still expected to make appearances in court regarding the case. She was also restricted from reading the news to avoid intimidating witnesses.
After the incidence, every move the reporter made was closely monitored by the media who broke every news regarding her including her first public appearance.
Jacque Maribe and Joseph Irungu at Milimani law courts
2. Barrack Oduor
2018 will live to be the year that Oduor, an NTV reporter from Migori will recount and narrate to his grandkids for years. The reporter, who was rather unknown before, made headlines after his reported escape from a moving vehicle carrying him and Sharon Otieno, a Rongo university student who was said to be Migori Governor Okoth Obado’s girlfriend.
According to Oduor, Sharon, who was later found dead approached him with claims that she had information on a scandal involving the Migori Governor and that the county boss had sent a response regarding the scandal.
Sharon then asked the correspondent to accompany him while she met Obado’s P.A, Micheal Oyamo. This ended with Barrack instinctively jumping out of a moving vehicle sustaining serious bruises on his arms and knees but is lucky to still be alive. Sadly, Sharon and her unborn baby were not as lucky as they were brutally killed. Court proceedings to bring the culprits of the murder to book are still ongoing.
3. Betty Kyallo
Once again, the K24 anchor’s love life took her to the other side of the screen after it was alleged that the news anchor was dating Mombasa Governor, Ali Hassan Joho whom she allegedly left her ex-husband Dennis Okari for.
Kyallo admitted to having been involved with the governor but revealed that things never worked out between them. She became a subject of trolling, with netizens claiming that Governor Joho took away the Porsche he had gifted her after they broke up.
Betty Kyalo also made headlines again after she launched her beauty parlor, Flair by Betty. It is alleged that she strategically opened the Salon strategically opposite Posh Palace, which she initially co-partnered with her friend Susan Kaittany after a bad fall out.
4.Mary Kilobi’s marriage to COTU boss.
Mary Kilobi’s love life broke the scenes after she admitted being married to COTU secretary general Francis Atwoli as his third wife. Kilobi indicated she preferred older men and that her last relationship with a young man was her biggest regret in life. She received a fair share of criticism from netizens who were uncomfortable with the age difference between the two. They argued that Kilobi had gotten into the marriage for financial gain. However, she defended herself, arguing that she loved Atwoli and money was just an added advantage.
5. Swaleh Mdoe
The Swahili anchor made it to the news in February after news emerged that he was looking to sell his Kidney for Ksh2.5 million in a bid to settle his debts.
“I have some pressing financial issue I want to offset and all I can think of right now is selling my kidney. And I need to do this urgently,” Swaleh revealed.
Whilst Swaleh received a massive response on people offering to buy his Kidney, others also discouraged him from selling it and instead, he set up a pay bill number for well-wishers to chip in their contributions.
6. Sophia Wanuna and Stephen Letoo Assault at JKIA
What started as an official attempt to fulfill their role as the people’s watchdogs went sour when the police roughed up the two journalists who were trying to cover Miguna Miguna’s deportation.
In what has been described as the ugliest scenes of media attacks in 2018, the police roughed up the journalists, injuring Letoo and the cameraman Joe Gichira, while Wanuna was shoved to the side and slapped. The incidence was caught on live TV
7.Larry Madowo, Ken Mijungu and Linus Kaikai
After airing ODM leader Raila Odinga’s swearing as people’s president, the trio was forced to spend their night at the Nation Media headquarters after they caught wind of information that the DCI was out to arrest.
The plainclothes officers, who had been sent to arrest the reporters, had surrounded the premise waiting for them to leave. That night, they slept on the floor in one of the television studios, on mattresses that were provided by the management. The incident became a huge deal with international media houses like CNN running the story.
While controversy was the main selling point for these media personalities, some actually made it to the headlines for good reasons. 2018 was a good year for some journalists with some of them being promoted and receiving international recognition.
8. Kanze Dena’s Appointment to State House
The former Citizen TV Swahili anchor, who had served in the newsroom for close to 16 years made headlines on October after President Uhuru Kenyatta appointed her for the enviable position of the official State House spokesperson and the head of the Presidential Strategic Communications Unit (PSCU). Kanze became the epitome of inspiration for many young Kenyans, with the media highlighting her journey from a casual laborer who peeled potatoes to her being the face of State House.
9. Farida Karoney’s CS Job
Farida Karoney spent an extensive number of her prime years in the newsroom as a reporter, editor, and correspondent both locally and internationally, rising to managerial positions in the media.
In January, she made the news after President Kenyatta appointed her as the Cabinet Secretary for Land.
10. Rashid Abdalla and Lulu Hassan
2018 has seen major shakeups in the major media houses in the country From poaching personalities introduction of new faces, nothing could beat Citizen TV’s genius idea to mash up Rashid Abdalla and Lulu Hassan as new faces of the 7 pm prime time news after Kanze left for State House.
The two, who are married in real life, became the talk of the town as viewers were curious to know how the two would balance their work-life relationship.