This briefing paper is a summary of findings from BBC Media Action
research. It seeks to identify the extent to which the national TV and
radio debate programme Sema Kenya (Kenya Speaks), part of BBC Media
Action’s governance work in Kenya, supported accountability, peace and
inclusion at the time of the 2013 Kenya election.
- After being complicit in post-election violence in 2007, Kenyan media
swung to the other extreme in 2013 when it self-censored to avoid
- In this environment, Sema Kenya provided the public with constructive,
moderated, audience-driven discussion and, arguably, more detailed
information than other media sources.
- By providing a platform for dialogue, where citizens were visibly
empowered to question their leaders, the programme also made a
contribution to supporting individuals to hold government officials to
See also Research Report Issue 5.
Githitho Muriithi, A.; Page, G. What was the role of the debate programme Sema Kenya in the 2013 Kenyan election? Research Briefing Issue 5. BBC Media Action, London, UK (2014) 8 pp.