The country’s leading media houses namely; Royal Media Services, Nation Media Group and the Standard Group have harshly condemned the Communications Authority of Kenya (CAK) for its decision to withdraw the licensing authorization given to them under the Africa Digital Network, (ADN) a consortium comprising the three media houses yesterday.
CAK yesterday criticised the media houses for running a misleading infomercial, which the body termed as; “offensive to the market, and a gross violation of the legal and regulatory framework governing the sector”.
The Media Owners Association (MOA) argue that the advert was no way misleading and has termed CAK’s action as ‘contempt of court, since the matter is before the Supreme Court awaiting determination.
The association has announced that it will challenge the matter in a court of law including filing a petition in an international court on infringement of intellectual rights in France.
“CAK should stop favouring the two foreign media houses GOTV and StarTimes at the expense of local media houses which have been serving this country for the last 15 years,” MOA.
“Today must be condemned as a blatant and irresponsible abuse of responsibility by a public-funded entity.
With a stroke of the pen, the regulator has taken the unprecedented decision to kill off Kenyan businesses funded through sweat and tears in order to protect the interests of two foreign companies.
CAK claims its action was informed by the media houses decision to sponsor and air an advertisement advising their viewers that these two foreign companies, StarTimes, a Chinese Company and Gotv a South African Company were airing the contents of the three broadcasters without consent, a clear infringement on intellectual property rights was an act of sabotage. Our positions is that its immoral and unjustifiable especially where Startimes and GOTV use the content we generate at our own expense to further financial profit motives.
It is why we are asking viewers keen on accessing their content to wait for our custom-made set top boxes. This will also help enable us to own and safeguard the integrity of the content we make available to our viewers.
We reiterate that we are not against digital migration. What we are fighting for is a level playing field where we will have an opportunity to compete fairly with others,” CITIZEN TV posted on their Facebook page.
Meanwhile Kenyans on social media continue to lash out at the media houses for derailing the digital migration.