EABL suspends advertising with Radio Africa after Homeboyz presenters’ slur on women

From left: Homeboyz's crew Neville, DJ Joe Mfalme and Shaffie Weru. [Photo: Shaffie Weru]

The East African Breweries Limited (EABL) has suspended advertising with the Radio Africa group following utterances by two presenters and a DJ from Homeboyz Radio on sexual assault against women.

On Wednesday during the Lit Off breakfast show, presenters Shaffie Weru, Neville and DJ Joe Mfalme waded into a debate where a woman was thrown off the 12th floor of a building by a man who she met on Facebook.

Eunice Wangari, 20, met Gatama Njoroge for the first time and spent the afternoon together at Ambank House in Nairobi.

Gatama made sexual advances towards her and she resisted. What followed was her being thrown off the 12th floor and landed on the 9th floor.

Their remarks which were perceived to glorify violence against women caused a storm online.

Now, EABl says that it takes such matters seriously and cannot continue advertising with Radio Africa which controls Homeboyz Radio until the issues is effectively addressed.

“As a responsible corporate citizen that upholds and champions gender inclusion, diversity and human rights, we support the ongoing investigations,” read part of the statement.

It added: “EABL strives to promote inclusion and diversity and we discourage gender insensitive statements including negative portrayal of women in all our marketing campaigns. The context in which content on the Wednesday programme was relayed goes against the core tenets of this agenda.”

“Consequently, beginning Wednesday, 25th March 2021, EABL paused all forms of advertising on the RAG programmes related with these presenters.”

EABL remarked that it will only rescind this decision if due diligence is conducted and the matter is addressed satisfactorily.

“As a pre-condition to revert to our advertising partnership, we have asked RAG to conduct due diligence in the selection of presenters and embed a robust consequence management plan on those that do not abide to the code of conduct.”

Already, Homeboyz Radio has suspended the trio for two weeks and they will be taken through a course on ethical reporting on women issues.

“During the suspension period, the presenters and all other Homeboyz Radio presenters, producers and the Homeboyz radio social media team shall undergo mandatory gender awareness sensitization training and training on ethical reporting and on-air discussion of women issues, sexual assault and gender-based violence,” the station’s General Manager Somoina Kimojino said on Friday.

Shaffie and DJ Mfalme have since apologized and admitted their utterances went overboard and that they do not support any form of violence against women.