By Nkonge I Kaggwa in Kampala – Uganda
Plans are underway by the government of President Yoweri Museveni to establish a law curtailing the use of social media especially during next year’s general elections.
This revelation was made by legislators under their umbrella body “The Uganda Parliamentary Forum on Media” this week. Speaking journalists at a briefing in Kampala, the Chairperson of the Forum, Mariam Nalubega, pointed out that when such a law is established, it will contradict with the country’s constitution. Nalubega is also the woman representative of Butambala in parliament. She said that “Article 29(1) of the constitution of Uganda clearly states that, “every person shall have the right to…freedom of speech and expression which shall include freedom of press and other media”.
The media briefing comes at a time when the country’s minister of state for internal affairs, James Baba has already warned the media on the use of social media. He told mourners at the recent national mourning day of the fallen Interior Minister General Aronda Nyakairima at Kololo independence grounds in the capital Kampala, that government was very concerned about the way the social media was falsely circulating news about what caused the deceased’s death. He disclosed that a law was in the offing to see how the social media would be controlled. “Government is to come up with a legal framework to curb the usage of social media because some people are misusing it”. Baba was quoted as saying.