KAMPALA —Government Parliamentary Chief Whip Thomas Tayebwa says all party Members of Parliament will be required to join social media platforms in his quest to enhance visibility of Government programmes and resolutions.
The ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) has upto 377 legislators in the 11th Parliament including the elderly representatives.
“We have to ensure that each and every NRM Member has a social media account. We can agree on the main ones; Facebook, twitter even Instagram the young people will need it, you know we need them,” Tayebwa said during a caucus handover ceremony at his Parliamentary chambers.
“Each one should come out and publicize especially parliamentary resolutions. We don’t want to be depending on someone else’s mercy to give us publicity”.
Government this Financial Year introduced a 12% tax on internet data, a development that is already constraining internet usage.
The new 12% levy started when Uganda is in the middle of a second wave of Covid-19, which saw the government recently instituting a 42-day lockdown that prohibits all public gatherings, inter-district travel, and public transport.
This has rendered digital technologies indispensable to working, learning, public participation, and livelihoods, yet Uganda’s new tax is already adversely affecting internet access and citizens’ access to information – perhaps more than the now repealed social media tax.
Having recently secured a USD 200 million loan from the World Bank to support “access [to] high-quality and low-cost internet, public services online, a digital economy driving growth, innovation and job creation,” Uganda’s new tax seems inconsistent to the larger national visions of digital transformation, including the National Broadband Policy (2018-2023) and the Digital Vision 2040.