IMG PR Limited, an advertising and public relations agency contracted by East African Breweries (EABL), has been exposed for promoting regurgitated content in Kenyan media channels and passing it off as original publication by the brewer’s top directors.
In a move that has raised questions about the ethics of the company, IMG PR Limited on Tuesday promoted two opinion pieces in the Daily Nation and the Business Daily newspapers, both of which were written by the same author but were given bylines of two different directors at EABL.
The articles, which were supposedly authored by the Marketing and Innovations Director Anne Joy Michira and the Group MD and CEO Jane Karuku respectively, were found to be a mere copy-and-paste job, tweaked with different headlines and supposedly written by two different people.
This unethical practice of misrepresenting opinion pieces by Ms. Michira and Ms. Karuku not only left readers feeling disillusioned but also raised major doubts about the authenticity of the content produced by IMG PR Limited, not to mention serious concerns about the integrity and ethical standards of EABL.
Promoting Alcoholism in Kenya
Through Group MD Jane Karuku, EABL has been promoting alcoholism in Kenya, a move that has raised alarm bells about the health and well-being of the young population.
The quantity and frequency of deaths caused by the intake of alcoholic beverages have reached worrying proportions, with many losing their lives as a result of overindulging.
EABL has been spending millions of money on influencers to glamorize and normalize alcoholism.
Instead of sponsoring sporting and social activities, EABL now only sponsors parties and tippler concerts, raising questions about the company’s priorities and its impact on the health of low and middle-income Kenyans.
The company has yet to take practical and convincing steps to address concerns about alcoholism and provide rehabilitation for those affected by this vice.
The company’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program, which should focus on mental health, has almost been non-existent.
The Ministry of Health is noticeably absent in addressing these concerns, leaving many to wonder where their priorities lie.
Woke Culture or Destructive Feminism?
In addition to promoting alcoholism, EABL also practices woke culture, a term that originates from rabid feminism.
In March 2021, radio presenters Shaffie Weru, DJ Joe Mfalme, and Neville were sacked by Homeboyz Radio for asking if the female gender might have a role to play in efforts to bring down cases of domestic violence.
They were discussing a court case in which a man was accused of pushing a woman he had met on Facebook out of a 12th-floor window on their first date.
Shaffie Weru later revealed that the reason behind their dismissal was the pressure from the sponsors of the show and the radio station, as well as the backlash received on social media.
The primary source of this pressure was Jane Karuku, who has been the subject of multiple exposés by this blog.
Their dismissal raised concerns about freedom of speech and the dangers of political correctness.
Tax Fraud, Asset Looting
The company’s controversial practices extend even further back in history.
In August 2016, a petition was filed in the National Assembly against EABL for tax fraud, asset looting, and the purge of Kenyan managers.
The petition prompted an investigation by the House committees on finance, trade, labour, and social welfare, which highlighted the concerns of the late Gem MP Jakoyo Midiwo that the company was massively engaged in tax evasion that was going unnoticed by government agencies.
In a world where information is power, it is disheartening to see the Kenyan media fail in its role as a watchdog for truth.
Instead of thoroughly investigating and presenting credible news to the public, they are too often simply regurgitating press releases from corporations like EABL.
It is imperative that individuals in leadership positions are able to communicate their thoughts effectively and coherently.
The revelation of IMG PR Limited passing off regurgitated content as original publications under the bylines of Ms. Michira and Ms. Karuku, suggests a disturbing lack of writing proficiency among EABL’s top management, which is made up of fairly respected corporate leaders.
Such a blatant disregard for honesty and ethics is unacceptable, particularly for such people who hold the keys to shaping public opinion.
EABL should hold its directors accountable for their actions and ensure that those in its leadership positions possess the necessary skills to perform their duties to the highest standard.
The absence of basic writing skills among its leaders only adds to the list of reasons why EABL’s reputation has been sullied and calls into question their ability to make informed decisions on behalf of stakeholders.
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