Don’t give others platform for insult, Makuei warns local media

Michael Makuei Lueth, Minister of Information and official Government Spokesperson (File/Photo: Philip Buda Ladu)

By Philip Buda Ladu

South Sudan Minister of Information and Government’s Spokesperson, Michael Makuei Lueth has warned national media houses not to allow their platforms to be used for insulting any foreign government.

Makuei’s warning follows the row that the Kenyan media house KTN has thrown the South Sudan Government into with the Kenyan authorities recently.

The government’s spokesperson told journalists on Friday shortly after the regular Cabinet’s meeting, where the government summoned the Kenyan Ambassador in Juba and has handed him a protest letter following an incident that Kenyan Television Network (KTN) gave a platform for an exiled South Sudanese gov’t critic Peter Biar Ajak to insult President Salva Kiir’s personality.

“We have summoned the Ambassador here and given him our protest. Our Ambassador in Kenya has also been directed to present the protest letter to the Foreign Ministry of Kenya. That was of course not acceptable for a media house in Kenya to allow people or opposition just to utter irresponsible statements in the media house. This is not acceptable and we have taken all the necessary actions to address the situation,” Minister Makuei said.

He said that it was a very unfortunate situation because the speaker concentrated on the personal issues of the President.

Last week, Peter Biar Ajak during an interview with two Kenyan media stations was purportedly slammed for insinuating issues against President Salva Kiir Mayardit dubbing him along with his commanders as drunkards who had been drinking all along during the war.  

After that statement, Makuei said that South Sudan Ambassador in Kenya has been tasked to ensure that the Kenyan government investigates the media house for having allowed such a person to spoil the personal reputation of the sitting President of the nation who has full dignity for his country and the globe.

Having said that, Minister Makuei, turned his attention back home saying that the scenario now mandates him to caution the national media houses to desist from the same.

“This gives me an opportunity also to tell you our media houses to be careful. Don’t allow others to use you in order to insult, or use you to talk or to write against any foreign government because this automatically affects the diplomatic relations between the two countries.” Makuei cautioned.

“So I am warning you against that. Probably by Monday if all these are completed, you will be informed away. I am planning to hold a press conference whereby I will be talking more about all these” Makuei told reporters on Friday.  

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