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UCC orders 13 radio stations, TVs to suspend staff

FILE PHOTO: Uganda Communication Commission headquarters

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Uganda Communication Commission (UCC) has ordered 13 radio stations and TVs to suspend 39 staff over breach of minimum broadcasting standards. The lists released by UCC on Wednesday evening has six televisions and seven radios.

They are; Akaboozi Fm, Bbs Tv, Beat Fm, Bukedde Tv, Capital Fm, Cbs Fm, Kingdom Tv, Nbs Tv, Ntv, Pearl Fm, Salt Tv, Sapientia Fm and Simba Fm.

UCC, the media sector regulator orders each of the above stations to suspend producers, head of news, and head of programmes.

“This follows concerns over the nature of content aired on these broadcast stations particularly during live programmes, breaking news, and main news bulletins which do not comply with the Minimum broadcasting standards,” the regulator said in a statement.

Though UCC did not provide details, the incident referred to could be the Monday live broadcast of arrest and prosecution of Kyadondo East legislator, Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine.

Kyagulanyi  is currently on remand at Luzira and is expected to return to Buganda Road Chief Magistrate Court on Thursday morning.

The Commission says the programmes of the mentioned stationed contained content that; “misrepresents information, views, facts and events in a manner likely to mislead or cause alarm to the public.”

The regulator further said the programmes “Have extremist or anarchic messages, including incitement of violence for political and/or other purposes,” and “Incites the public against other members of the public based on their political, religious, cultural and tribal affiliations which are likely to create public insecurity or violence.”

UCC says it has previously engaged and warned above broadcasters over similar complaints, but has now become apparently that they have refused to take heed of the warnings.

The regulator further says it has commenced investigations of the matter.

To avoid a recurrence of similar breaches during the investigations, the commission directed that;

First; each of the above broadcasting stations should immediately suspend the Producer, Head of News and Head of Programmes pending conclusion of the investigations.

Second; each broadcasting station above should within three (3) days from the date of the notice, submit to the Commission the names, particulars and qualifications of the subject office holders.

Third; each broadcasting station above should within three (3) days from the date of the notice, submit to the Commission recordings of all live programs and news bulletins aired on the 29th of April 2019.

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URN

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