Kenya’s Tech Sector Hit With Its First Sexual Harassment Scandal

By Staff Published: July 16, 2017, 10:04 am
sexual harassmentUshahidi co-founder Ory Okolloh. (Photo: Business Daily)

Ushahidi, the global crisis-mapping platform headquartered in Kenya, has said it is investigating an alleged sexual harassment claim pitting an employee against a senior member of its team. The confirmation from Ushahidi comes days after unverified tech blog reports of victimization and covering up of harassment cases against women working for the company surfaced on blogs and social media outlets.

On July 11, Ory Okolloh, one of the original founders of Ushahidi and an influential figure on Kenya’s tech scene, also all but confirmed the story in a blog post. Okolloh, who left Ushahidi in 2010, described the current management and board’s response to the allegations as “unacceptable.” Okolloh, who was a 2015 Quartz Africa Innovator, also called on the tech community to examine the series of events that led to the current allegations and to protect those working in the industry.

From Quartz.  Story by Abdi Latif Dahir.

The latest revelations are damaging for the company, which is seen as a beacon in Kenya’s vibrant tech ecosystem—otherwise known as Silicon Savannah. The disclosures also constitute a first for the tech industry in Kenya, which has been growing since the late 2000’s and has attracted investors and admirers across the world. Ushahidi, which means “testimony” in Swahili, began out of the chaos that engulfed Kenya following the 2007 post-election violence. The platform was then used to collect testimonies, geo-locate where incidents were taking place, and help coordinate disaster response.

Read more at Quartz.

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