ICT Cabinet Secretary (CS) Eliud Owalo has implied that the Kenya Kwanza government may reduce its expenditure on media advertising.
CS Owalo questioned why the government keeps spending millions of shillings on advertisements in the private sector when there are government entities, such as the Postal Corporation of Kenya, that can circulate the said adverts at cheaper rates.
According to the ICT cabinet secretary, the government can spend approximately Ksh.60 million to print the ‘mygov’ State publication which he says can be reproduced by a state agency for around Ksh.3 million.
“I don’t see why the government should continue spending the amounts of money that it has been spending on advertising revenue. We are going to re-engineer that space in the not-so-distant future, but we are not against the media,” he said.
“Anything I do as the ICT CS must make sense from a business perspective. I won’t continue spending that large amount of money on advertising revenue in this digital age. It doesn’t make sense to me and once I get approval from relevant levels, I will definitely introduce certain changes.” CS Owalo added while speaking during an interview with Citizen TV.
According to the CS, the government is not mandated to finance the media.
He further noted that the media should think out of the box and find new revenue streams to sustain their businesses.
“You cannot continue doing your business the way you used to do before. We are in a digital age, and you cannot look at the government as the single source of revenue for the media,” he stated.
“You have to adapt to change. We are in a digital economy; you cannot continue doing your business the traditional way and expect solely to rely on government revenue. You are getting it wrong.” CS Owalo said.
Moreover, the CS’s remarks come a few weeks after Trade CS Moses Kuria made a roadside declaration directing government agencies to stop advertising with Nation Media Group.