KAMPALA – The Pornography Control Committee (PCC) and the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) on Thursday, March 21, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will see internet service providers (ISPs) directed to block their customers from accessing websites with pornographic content.
The MoU signed by the executive director, Eng. Godfrey Mutabazi on behalf of UCC and Dr. Annette Kezaabu Kasimbazi for PCC will allow the two bodies to corporate and collaborate in early detection of pornography on all communications, prosecution of offenders, training media personnel and provision of educative materials on dangers of pornography; all aimed at implementing the Anti-Pornography Act.
Speaking at the signing ceremony held at UCC headquarters in Kampala, the PCC chairperson, Dr. Kezaabu said the duo will use available infrastructures in detecting pornography including digital logger, free communication services – shortcodes and toll-free numbers.
“This is a very important partnership to us,” she said, adding that UCC being a regulator of all communications platforms has got the capability to direct all [internet service] providers on any matter concerning consumers’ wellbeing including morals.
Govt dragged to court
A lawyer, who also describes himself as a concerned citizen, Mr. Hassan Male Mabirizi, petitioned court seeking orders to set aside a March 12, 2019, parliamentary resolution in which government intends to borrow UGX1.3 trillion on behalf of an Italian investor who wants to construct an international specialized hospital at Lubowa.
In a petition filed before the High Court Civil Division, Mr. Mabirizi said the process of passing the said resolution was tainted with illegalities, irrational and contained procedural impropriety.
“The resolution is unreasonable, unfair and contrary to common sense and an uncalled for the burden on the taxpayers of this country,” reads, in part, the court documents.
In his application, Mr. Mabirizi listed the illegalities including the lack of the requisite quorum of 1/3 of Members of Parliament, the Speaker taking Oye (yes) as the majority vote yet to him the MPs who voted “No” were many; and failure by the said investor and company – FINASI/ROKO construction special purpose vehicle to go through a formal bidding process to win the contract as required by PPDA rules.
Mr. Mabirizi named another a procedural error in the passing of this resolution as when government signed a contract to borrow money to this investor without first seeking approval from Parliament as per A of (159) of the Public Financial Institutions.
Kyarenga music concert in Dubai
Mr. Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu aka Bobi Wine and Nubian Li on Thursday, March 21 left the country to Dubai where they were to perform at different music concerts.
Bobi Wine, who is a Member of Parliament for Kyaddondo East, and his colleagues were slated to perform on Friday, March 21, 2019.
Meanwhile, after the Dubai concert, the duo were expected to take Kyarenga extra concert to South Africa to perform in three major cities.
Recently, local authorities banned all Bobi Wine’s musical performances in Uganda after holding his famous Kyarenga concert at One Love Beach Busabala which since then saw the singer fall out with security operatives who were claiming that he was using the music platforms to incite violence and make political rallies.
Kaweesi murder suspects bail
Meanwhile, on Friday, March 22 Justice Lydia Mugambe asked both the State and lawyers of the 8 suspects who are facing charges of murder of former police spokesperson Andrew Felix Kaweesi to verify their IDs and residences while on bail as a fulfilment of their bail terms.
The group had appeared in court Friday, March 22 for the judge to sign their release documents, however, prosecution led by Mr. Lino Aguzu, said they had not yet concluded with the process of verifying the suspects’ IDs and residences as per the court order before releasing them.
“Given the nature of these cases, we cannot just let them go without knowing where to find them when they jump bail. All what court wants is the verification of the IDs and their residences while on bail,” Justice Mugambe ruled.
On Wednesday, March 20, Justice Mugambe released the group on bail pending the hearing of their case after presenting at least three substantial sureties, which qualifies them for release pending the hearing of their case.
World Food Programme Karamoja food turns sour
The Uganda government and the World Food Programme (WFP) faced legal action over contaminated food they supplied in Napak and Amudat, Karamoja region.
In a notice of intention to sue written to the Country Director WFP (Uganda) Mr. El Khidir Daloum, the director legal and corporate Affairs of Anti-Counterfeit Network Africa (ACN), Mr. Fred Muwema, said: “We have learnt that your organization has been involved in the supply of supper cereal also described as corn soy blend fortified food in Napak and Amudat which are found in Karamoja.”
A four-page notice dated March 20, 2019, also added “we have also read media reports where you have confirmed that WFP suspended the distribution of the above-impugned food last week because it was suspected to be poisoned or contaminated. This would amount to counterfeit or fake food.”
The intention to sue follows media reports that indicate that three people are suspected to have died due to suspected food poisoning and more 250 people have symptoms of confusion, vomiting, headache, high fever and abdominal pain after consuming food supplied by WFP.
Speaker Kadaga’s health in danger
On Friday, March, 22 President Yoweri Museveni checked on the Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga who was admitted to Nakasero Hospital in Kampala for treatment.
Speaker’s sickness came after her return from abroad on official visits in different countries, including the US.
According to Parliament, it was fatigue and jet lag, however, the doctors at the hospital say that she was having difficulties in breathing.
President’s visit followed the deputy speaker Jacob Oulanyah visit who is believed to be the one who told the President about the Speaker’s condition.
The President arrived at the hospital at around noon. His convoy kept outside the hospital while only two of his vehicles entered the hospital gate.
By close of the week, Ms. Kadaga had been flown to Nairobi for more medical attention. Reports indicated that despite going to Nairobi, her life was getting better and better.
Kamwokya land row targeting Bobi Wine?
On Thursday 21, Kyadondo East Member of Parliament Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine said the eviction threat against his building in Kamwokya, a Kampala city, was targeting him because of his political status.
Recently, M/s Pearl Hope Investments Limited notified Bobi Wine and 400 residents about the planned eviction from Mulimira, Kisenyi and Old Kira Road zones. The disputed land, measuring about 26 acres, is located on Block 213 Plots 20-78, while other plots are marked as 1979, 20186, and 1977.
But Bobi Wine said he was occupying the land legally as he bought it, and accused his political enemies of victimizing the other residents.
“The innocent people are suffering because Kyagulanyi is involved. I will fight for the people. None of us is staying on this land illegally; I bought a plot and bought the land. I am sure many of us did that or at least did one of them that means we are legally here,” he said.
BoU probe: Youth jump into action against IGG
In other news, a group called The Youth Power Research Uganda, have threatened to take the Inspector General of Government to court over failure to publish a report into investigations of illicit accumulation by the former Bank of Uganda Executive Director for Supervision Justine Ms Justine Bagyenda.
In a letter dated March 18 and received by the Inspectorate on March 21, the youth group says the IGG had refused to release findings of the investigation saying the matter was before court and the Parliament’s Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authorities and State Enterprises.
“Take notice that this is a breach of public trust,” the group wrote through their lawyers SK Nsubuga & Company Advocates.
Luweero accident claims lives
On Saturday, March 23 bad news came from Luweero as six people were confirmed dead and 8 left with severe injuries in a fatal accident that happened at Lukomera village, Luweero Sub County on Kampala-Gulu Highway.
The incident happened when a taxi heading to Kampala from Luweero, with registration number UAU 526A collided with a lorry registration number UBB 030D on Friday 22, at around 11 pm.
The injured were identified as Eric Ssempijja, Akram Bulaga, Sharon Nanyonjo, Tonny Kalyango, and Judith Akello.
Others included; Brian Heresa, a student of Everest College in Luweero town and one only identified as Ntalo.
Police said among the six deceased, five were men and one female.