By Nassiwa Hanifah Samula
Members of parliament from the opposition have condemned the directives from the Uganda communications Commission Director Godfrey Mutabazi to suspend senior journalists accusing them of airing news about honourable kyagulanyi sentamu aka Bobiwine.
The issue was raised in the house by the opposition chief whip and member of Parliament kira Municipality Ibrahim Semujju Nganda expressing his dissatisfaction with the way the media freedom is being suffocated in uganda and reminding parliament that uganda has been ranked 125 out of the 180 countries that abuse the rights of journalists. Semujju says Mutabazi issued a directive to thirteen media houses to suspend their senior journalists which is quite unfair and he has warned the government of how negative coverage will just kill tourism.
In response to the MP’s cries the state minister for Housing Chris Baryomunsi told parliament that government is committed to preserve media freedoms.
The minister further says UCC is supposed to do its work and those who feel are wronged by its decisions are free to go to court.However, the ministers response did not go down well with the mps who say that UCC is a creation of parliament,not an Alpha and Omega of this countryand so parliament can revoke the decision that was made by UCC.
The MPs who include Muhammad Nsereko,kassiano Wadri, Hassan Fungaroo,Francis Mwijukye,Moses Kasibante have all condemned the acts of police officers who keep stopping the members of opposition from having radio shows with the recent being yesterday in Hoima where the party president Patrick Amuriat was stopped from participating in a political show.
These want answers from government on whether the opposition leaders have been completely banned from attending any radio talks anymore since they are always ambushed .
Deputy speaker Jacob Oulanya therefore, advised the minister for ICT to clarify on this matter before parliament next week.