The Kenya Film Classification Board (KFCB) delegation to South Africa has embarked on the first session of the exchange programme with South Africa’s Film and Publication Board (FPB). The team is being led by Chairman Bishop Jackson Kosgey and Chief Executive Officer Mr. Ezekiel Mutua.
The tour seeks to create regional and global networks by facilitating an opportunity to share experiences and ideas on film and broadcast content regulation, including the possibility of establishing a continental content classification framework.
Further, the tour will provide critical insights into online content regulation, online tracing of illegal and harmful content including child pornography, appeal procedures on classification decisions and online content distribution.
The exchange programme, which will seek to create collaboration with the SADC block on film related matters, follows the signing of an MOU between KFCB and the Film and Publications Board of South Africa early this year.
During the week-long mission, KFCB Directors will hold crucial meetings with the Ministry of Communications of South Africa, the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA), SA Communications Forum, UNISA, MultiChoice, Child Welfare, Google, Unesco, UNICEF, chairperson of the Portfolio Committee, the Press Council of SA, among other key institutions. KFCB will also attend a film festival in Durban.
The trip comes at a critical time when the Board is embarking on a review of the Film and Stage Plays Act Cap 222 of the Laws of Kenya to align it to the Constitution and enhance the efficiency of the Board by addressing ew technologies and media convergence.
New content distribution platforms such as the Over the Top Services (OTTs) also inform the Board’s desire to gain more expertise as well as strengthen its regulatory framework to address the new technological dynamics and challenges.
It comes at a time when the Board’s mandate has been expanded to include new roles such as Film Licensing and the enforcement of the Programming Code for Free-to-Air radio and television stations in Kenya.
Emergent moral challenges associated with exposure of children to violent content, crime and immitable behaviour, glamorising of drug abuse and alcoholic substances through advertising, t betting and gambling craze promoted through the media, and misuse of social media to propagate hate speech online are among the challenges KFCB seeks to address.
The Board is optimistic that the tour will enrich our regulatory processes and improve the efficiency in restoring the nation’s moral values through film and broadcast content regulation.