Back in the day, there was only one television station that broadcasted all over Kenya. The Kenya Broadcasting Corporation was established during the colonial era. KCB was the only television station in Kenya then. It was renamed the Voice of Kenya and was the mouthpiece of the Kenyan government at the time. The station was later renamed to The Kenya Broadcasting Corporation as it had been initially, to show its linkage to the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).
During that era, there were many local programs aired on KBC such as “Vitimbi” and “Vioja”. Soap operas such as “No one but you”, “The Bold and the beautiful” and “Tropical Heat” were enjoyed by the adults in Kenya. Then there was “Wrestling” an all-time favourite for all and sundry. Most school kids in Kenya at the time would discuss these television programs aired then in Kenya over their breaks from class.
During the reign of Mwai Kibaki as president, many other broadcasting networks in Kenya came up. Some of the most popular television stations in Kenya are:
The Kenya Television Network is yet another broadcasting network in Kenya. The Standard Group in Kenya runs the KTN media house and the daily Standard newspaper. KTN was the first television station that broke the monopoly of KBC in the early 1990’s. Most of the reporters in KTN double up as correspondents of major media houses such as CNN and BBC. Most foreign correspondents, on the other hand, rely on KTN for Kenyan news when making their footage.
The National Television Network, (NTV) formerly Nation is owned by Nation Media Group in Kenya, which is the largest media group in Kenya. Nation Media Group (NMG) also owns the Daily Nation newspaper as well as Easy FM on radio in Kenya. NTV station broadcasts up to 100 km radius from the major towns in Kenya such as Nairobi, Eldoret, Nyeri, Nanyuki and Meru.
Family TV in Kenya which is run by TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network) broadcasts programs and documentaries with a religious angle to Kenyans. Family TV seeks to provide a different kind of television entertainment in Kenya from most of the other media houses.
Citizen Television in Kenya, which is owned by the Royal Media Group in Kenya, is debatably the most popular television channel in Kenya today. With over ten other vernacular radio stations in Kenya, the Royal Media Group in Kenya is most certainly a force to reckon with. Some of the vernacular radio stations owned by Royal Media Group (RMG) in Kenya include Musyi FM for the Kambas, Wimwaro FM for the Embus, Chamgei FM for the Kalenjins, Ramogi FM for the Luos and Inooro FM for the Kikuyus. This means that the media house in Kenya has a huge clientele and listeners all over the world.
There are other stations currently running in Kenya such as KISS TV, QTV, K24, SYR and GBS.
For the lucky few Kenyans who have subscribed to decoders in Kenya, such as Gotv and DSTV, are spoilt for choice with stations.