Linus Kaikai & Other High-Flying Journalists Whose Careers Span Over 20 Years
The Kenyan media industry is dynamic sector that continues to change even in the wake of digital disruption.
Notably, the media landscape is characterised by personalities, some of whom have become household names. However, many do not survive the rough terrain and nature of the industry.
Despite the challenges, there is a clique of journalists who have been on the small screens for decades.
Kenyans.co.ke compiled a list of journalists whose high-flying careers span more than twenty years.
Renowned journalist Jeff Koinange at the Citizen TV studios
Jeff Koinange who hosts the JKLive show on Citizen TV is one of the most decorated journalists in Kenya.
Koinange made his mark at Reuters where he worked between 1995 and 2002 before joining CNN in 2001 as a Senior Africa correspondent a position he held for six years.
Before joining Reuters, Koinange worked for ABC News from 1991 and 1992 and as a producer for NBC News in 1994.
Koinange made his mark in the Kenyan media industry when he joined K24 on December 2007 to host The Bench where he started his trademark pompous media interviews.
He has also worked with ARISE Television in Johannesburg, South Africa and KTN. He joined Citizen TV in 2017.
Veteran Citizen Radio journalist Uncle Fred Obachi Machoka at Radio Maisha studios on November 13, 2021.
Courtesy Fred Obachi Machoka
Fred Obachi Machoka
Fred Obachi Machoka who was once a General Service Unit (GSU) soldier is arguably the longest-practising journalist in the country.
Although Machoka became a full-time journalist in 1976, he became a radio personality in 1975 when he took a part-time job at Voice of Kenya (VOK) doing commercials.
Some of the famous commercial slogans he came up with at VOK which later rebranded to Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) include; SANYO juu, Seng’enge ni ng’ombe, Ugua pole na Lucozade, Sportsman ni sawa hasa and Mchanganyiko maalum na Bitchman.
Machoka left KBC in 2002 and joined Royal Media Services to host the Roga Roga show a Rhumba show that is now in its 21st year.
Royal Media Services (RMS) Group Editorial Director Linus Kaikai addresses the audience during the launch of the report on The State of Press Freedom in Kenya on February 21, 2023.
Linus Kaikai is the current Editorial Director, Royal Media Services and former President, Kenya Editors Guild – KEG.
Kaikai who started his career in the early 90s left his position at KTN as a reporter in 1999 moving to South Africa to work for South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).
He returned to Kenya in 2007 where he worked at KTN as Managing Editor in charge of Quality and Product Development.
Kaikai for the second time in his career left KTN in 2009 to join NTV as General Manager a position he held until 2018 when he left to join Royal Media Services.
A collage of Alex Chamwada posing for a photo
Alex Chamwada ventured into the media in 1994 as a volunteer radio presenter with Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC). He was later promoted to TV reporter a position he held between 1997 and 1998.
In 1999, Chamwada became one of the top-notch journalists who quit their jobs to join the newly founded Citizen TV. He only worked for Royal Media Services (RMS) for two years and joined KTN in 2001 as a political editor.
Chamwada later returned to RMS but quit employment altogether in 2014 to focus on media consultancy where he founded Chams Media Limited.
“CHAMS Media is a TV production company which supplies content to KTN Kenya. Our current products include The Chamwada Report; A weekly 24-minute current affairs show on development issues that air and Daring Abroad Series which focuses on life-changing stories of Kenyans working or doing business abroad,” Chamwada speaks of his consultancy work.
File Photo of Citizen TV Anchor Swaleh Mdoe During His Past News Presenting Session
Swaleh Mdoe is one of Kenya’s most celebrated journalists who currently works as a Kiswahili Editor and News Anchor for Citizen TV.
Mdoe started his journalism career in 1991 and for 31 years, he has worked for the following media organisations; Kenya Times, Standard Newspaper, The Message, Weekly Mail, BBC, NTV, and KTN.
Mdoe is known for his humorous Tafakari ya Babu where he signs off his news broadcast with a witty and sometimes controversial wisdom titbit.
Another notable jounalist that has been around long enough is Joe Ageyo, the current Editorial Director, Nation Media Group (NMG). Ageyo previously worked at Citizen TV, KTN and NTV.