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Uganda: social media is shut down, but why?

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Museveni: Why government shut down social media in Uganda

Published on January 13, 2021, The East African
Uganda: social media is shut down, but why?

Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni on Tuesday evening confirmed the shutdown of social media channels in the country ahead of Thursday’s General Election.

Earlier on Tuesday, Uganda Communications Commission (UCC), the country’s communication governing body, denied allegations of imposing restrictions on communication channels. It said it had not been given any directive to disrupt social media or slow down the internet.

The UCC is mandated by law to regulate the communications sector.

The President apologised for inconveniences caused to social media users and blamed the shutdown on social media platforms that blocked accounts of National Resistance Movement (NRM) supporters.

On Monday, Facebook said it had shut a slew of accounts belonging to Ugandan government officials accused of seeking to manipulate public debate ahead of elections.

While delivering his address to the nation ahead of the Thursday polls, Mr Museveni said Facebook refused to heed the appeals by the government to unblock his supporters’ social media pages. Following Facebook's refusal, the government then shut down the internet, he said.



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