Scouts’ body buys newspaper advert space to warn Eric Omondi

By Susan Kogi On Fri, 22 Nov, 2019 16:02 | 2 mins read
The Kenya Scouts Association has warned comedian Eric Omondi against misusing their uniform. [PHOTO | FILE]
The Kenya Scouts Association has warned comedian Eric Omondi against misusing their uniform. [PHOTO | FILE]
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    The Kenya Scouts Association has warned comedian Eric Omondi against misusing their uniform.

The Kenya Scouts Association has warned comedian Eric Omondi against misusing their uniform.

On October 16, 2019 Eric Omondi (L), MC Antonio (C) and Mammito (R) posted an image on social media wearing the scouts’ outfit. [PHOTO | COURTESY]

On October 16 this year, Omondi posted on his Instagram page an image of him, comedienne Mammito and MC Antonio sporting the scout uniform. The three, the picture showed, were in a jungle setting acting like freedom fighters.

And now, the Kenya Scouts Association says Omondi acted inappropriately and showed disrespect to the scouts’ body.

In a newspaper advert posted on Page 50 of the Daily Nation on Friday, November 22, the Kenya Scouts Association said: “Our attention has been drawn to a photo of renowned comedians in scout uniform. While the association encourages and promotes arts and creativity, the use of sacred scout gear such as badges and uniform is highly protected and must not be used inappropriately.”

“The laws of Kenya, under the Kenya Scouts Act CAP 219, protect the scout uniform and cautions against its misuse. It shall not be lawful for any person, not being under the rules of the association duly authorised and entitled so to do, publicly to wear, carry or bear any uniform, badge, taken or emblem. After a thorough scan of the photo, it is in our view that the actions in the photo, portrays a high misuse of the scout uniform and potentially taints our image, reputation and brand as Kenya’s leading disciplined youth movement,” said the Kenya Scouts Association.

The scouts’ body now wants the comedians to apologise over the said-misuse of their formal outfit.

“We call upon the pictured artists to apologise online and pull down the images and related footage, and not to reuse them thereafter; effective November 22, 2019.”

Eric Omondi, however, says he did not mean to disrespect the scouts’ body.

“The message in the photo and a video released thereafter was very direct; anyone who watched it can tell that we were celebrating those who fought for our freedom. We mainly wanted to celebrate the Kapenguria Six [Bildad Kaggia, Kung’u Karumba, Jomo Kenyatta, Fred Kubai, Paul Ngei, and Achieng’ Oneko] who have not received enough coverage,” Omondi told K24 Digital on phone Friday afternoon.

“A month has passed since we posted the picture and video. Why is it that they are coming out now to claim we misused their uniform? It is confusing,” he added.

The Kenya Scouts Association (KSA) is a registered member of the World Organization of Scouting Movement and is the largest Youth Movement in Kenya, with over 1,000,000 boy and girl Scouts and a support team of over 40,000 Scout Leaders. Scouting in Kenya was established in 1910.

Scouting is an international voluntary, educational, nonpolitical Movement for young people open to all – boys and girls without distinction of origin, race, gender, and creed or ethnic/tribal background in accordance with the purpose, principles and methods as conceived by the founder, Lord Baden Powell.

Scouting in Kenya started on November 24, 1910 with the formation of the first Nairobi troop at St. John’s Church (C.M.S.) Pumwani.