Why Nairobi is a Hub for Hacks

Interesting views reach me from Sudan where Blake Evans-Pritchard, a teacher and occasional freelance writer, has been casting a critical eye over journalists in general and the Nairobi press pack in particular.

Well-known commentators in London and New York write prolifically on the country [Sudan], as though their word is God, whilst only a handful of hacks in the country really understand what’s going on. Then you have the press pack in Nairobi, based there because visas are easy and booze is cheap. Many of them flit over the border from time to time, head for the Juba bars, scribble down a few lines and scoot back again. Most do not speak Arabic.

I was discussing his points with a couple of pals over a cheap pint the other night and frankly couldn’t dispute a word of it. Why base yourself somewhere where you can’t get a drink or an exit visa to leave the country? Madness. The only factor he overlooks are Nairobi’s hookers – both cheap and easy.