Media personality Caroline Mutoko says she and former Citizen TV news anchor Julie Gichuru were not paid – even a shilling – for emceeing at President Uhuru Kenyatta’s fundraiser, which took place last Friday night (June 9) at the Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi.
Caroline Mutoko and Julie Gichuru were trolled on social media after a picture of them with President Kenyatta at Safari Park Hotel surfaced online, with critics accusing the two media personalities of endorsing President Kenyatta’s re-election bid – “whereas their jobs call for political objectivity”.
The picture, taken in a selfie mode, would – two days later – make it to the splash of a national newspaper. Caroline Mutoko says she, thereafter, received even more trolls.
The ex-Kiss FM presenter accuses her critics of jealousy. She says: “The critics are trolling because of the information vacuum, which exists on how much money she and Julie received for emceeing at Uhuru’s event”.
Caroline Mutoko has posted a video on her YouTube channel addressing those who hated – or are still hating – on her alongside Julie Gichuru.
She said: “I think the really important and wonderful blessing about having Julie Gichuru as a co-emcee is that we did not need to have a conversation about the fact that we were not charging. That is right. We were not paid. It is something we decided. Nobody decided for us.”
GIFT FOR UHURU
Caroline Mutoko says the free emceeing service offered by the two of them was a gift for President Kenyatta.
“The only time we mentioned it publicly – that we were emceeing at the event for free – was at the dinner and we told the President clearly that we have forfeited our fee as a gift to him; to his fundraiser. Done! So, now that you know we did not get paid – coz that was the only thing that was bugging you – you are sitting there, wondering: ‘how much did they get paid?’ The jealousy was destroying you. Calm down, untangle your knickers, swallow the bile in your throat before it kills you and go back to life. We are good at what we do and we are really good,” she said.
“NASA WILL ALSO WANT PRO BONO EMCEEING SERVICES”
According to Caroline Mutoko, her decision alongside Julie Gichuru, to offer pro bono emceeing service is that the Opposition, given a precedent she and Julie have set, “will also want free emceeing services, probably by other emcees, who, in nearly-all probability, will, unlike Julie and Mutoko, want a payment”.
“However, here is the problem with what we did: National Super Alliance (NASA) is about to have a fundraiser. I dare you, I dare you to try and charge them. They will be like: ‘Caroline and Julie did not charge Uhuru, who are you?’ Huh! Then the bile will start all over again, which just goes to show: You cannot please people. If we had been paid, you will be bitter and now that we have not been paid, there are some people who have just decided we have spoilt it for everybody; so, they are still going to be angry. Do you boo boo, don’t worry about me. And the scarcity mentality thing, kill it before it kills you,” concluded Caroline Mutoko in the four-minute video clip.
Earlier Julie Gichuru had also taken to social media to defend her presence at Uhuru fundraiser, accusing her critics of linking her to the newsroom – which calls for objectivity when covering matters politics – ,whereas she had left the newsroom two years ago.
“Dear Kenyans, I will say this as simply as I possibly can, we are in this nation together. If you cannot see the progress that has been made, you have clearly chosen not to. Yes, there has been progress. Are there challenges? Yes, of course there are and both Ndinda Mutoko and I speak openly and widely about them – from corruption to tribalism and much more. ION, I exited the news cycle close to two years ago (fascinating that you barely noticed as you keep discussing me in the context of news) and have the right to comment and take a position on issues.”
YOU WON’T BULLY ME – JULIE GICHURU
“You cannot bully people into your chosen stand; and if you cannot respect the fact that people can take a stand that is not based on personal benefit, then that speaks volumes about you; not the person you are attacking.
“Bimbo insults don’t work either, for women who have carved the space that we have, sorry, it does not apply and again speaks volumes about the mindless misogyny of the abuser. For those sharing civilised perspectives, all are appreciated.
“Let’s engage in a civilised fashion but most of all, let us respect each others’ views. I have love for you, irrespective of where you stand and it is my prayer that you can adopt that same attitude towards your fellow Kenyans. If you can’t, what does it say about you? God bless Kenya always.”
KSH500 MILLION IN TWO HOURS
President Uhuru Kenyatta’s fundraising meeting, which lasted two hours, yielded Ksh500 million.
About 500 people attended the event. Organisers said they hoped to raise another half a billion shillings in two weeks.
Those in attendance were mainly affluent business people, who each contributed not less than Ksh1 million while others pledged in-kind support.
Uhuru thanked the contributors and expressed optimism that he will be re-elected on August 8 general election.
Watch Caroline Mutoko’s video below: