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Larry Madowo dumps BBC for CNN

Kenyan journalist Larry Madowo has left the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and taken up a new position at the USA-owned Cable News Network (CNN) as the Nairobi-based correspondent.

The announcement was made on Thursday by Deborah Rayner, Senior Vice President of International Newsgathering and Managing Editor, Europe, Middle East, and Africa, for CNN International.

Madowo has enjoyed a significant growth in his journalism career since joining Kenya Television Network (KTN) as an intern about a decade ago.

He then moved to BBC initially as the Africa business editor before taking a year-long sabbatical in 2018 to study at the Columbia University, in New York.

After completing his studies, Madowo opted not to take up his job in Africa and has been serving as the BBC’s North America Correspondent in Washington, D.C.

In this role, he covered major stories in the USA including the Covid-19 outbreak, 2020 presidential elections, protests that followed the death of George Floyd.

While in the US, Madowo also served as a fill-in anchor for the network’s flagship BBC World News America show that airs globally and on PBS stations across the United States.

The CNN assignment marks a return to Nairobi for the Kenyan-born Madowo, who started his broadcasting career at Kenya Television Network at the age of 20.

“From enterprise reporting in Ethiopia’s Tigray region to investigations into oil drilling in Namibia’s Kavango Basin, via a range of cultural and business stories across dedicated programming, Africa has never been more visible on CNN’s multiple platforms,” Rayner added in the statement.

“Larry is an experienced journalist whose expertise across politics, business, entertainment, and hard news stories will play into our diverse coverage of East Africa and beyond.”

Madowo adds that he had enjoyed reporting from the U.S. and around the world, but it’s a real privilege to return to covering Africa at such a critical time in Kenya and around the continent.

“I have long admired CNN International’s award-winning coverage, and I’m honored to be joining such a talented team. I look forward to sharing the full spectrum of life in one of the most dynamic parts of the world with CNN’s global audiences,” he said.

Madowo has previously served as the BBC Africa Business Editor.

Before joining the BBC he worked for NTV Kenya and CNBC Africa, where he anchored the business channel’s daily market shows Open Exchange, Power Lunch, and Closing Bell in Johannesburg.

Named a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum in 2020, Madowo has a bachelor’s degree in Communication from Daystar University in Kenya as well as a master’s in Business and Economics Journalism from Columbia University in New York, where he was a Knight-Bagehot Fellow.