The Kenya News Agency has been looking to revamp its operations with the intent of competing effectively in the digital space. The Kenya News Agency was established on December 5th, 1963, a week to Kenya’s Independence specialising in news gathering across the country and news dissemination for local and international news agencies. So far, it has managed to amass a volume of content totalling 700,000 photos, 6,000 hours of video, 20,000 hours of audio, 500,000 records of articles and 40,000 bounded books worth of magazines dating back to 1936.
In 2011, the ICT Authority conceived a project aimed at digitising the content owned by the News Agency. Funding for the project was secured in 2014 with the process starting in June 2015. The digitisation process included cataloguing where the description was added to files, making them searchable. In addition, the government has established the Kenya News Agency Rapid Result Initiative, with the aim of fostering this agenda. Other efforts to ensure success have included capacity building where 15 editors and 15 social media personnel have been trained to fast-track preparedness to deliver news and information on the target. Efforts to re-brand have also been underway.
The Kenya News Agency has now announced the launch of Uriithi portal, a repository of Kenya’s history in multimedia format. Through the portal, interested individuals can view, purchase and use these records. At the same time, KNA will hold an exhibition on Agha Khan Walk Nairobi with the view of creating awareness on Kenya’s history. Since October, the agency has been holding such exhibitions in different towns across the country including Machakos, Muranga, Nakuru, Mombasa, Maralal and Kisumu.
The goal for the ICT Authority is to make KNA a competitive public entity, which can operate sustainably and compete with other international news bureaus.