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Ugandan president bans social media platforms ahead of elections

Move part of broader ban on social media platforms ahead of polls

Ugandan president bans social media platforms ahead of elections

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni banned Facebook and other social media platforms Tuesday as the country prepares to hold presidential elections this week.

Addressing the nation in Kampala, Museveni accused Facebook of being arrogant.

A few days ago, Facebook closed the accounts of two Museveni supporters locally known as Bajjo and Full Figure over what it called misuses of their accounts.

Due to the closures, the government is punishing Facebook by closing it in the country, Museveni said earlier.

The closing of his supporters’ accounts did not go well with Museveni, especially after Uganda failed in its efforts a few weeks ago to make Facebook close some accounts that the state deemed dangerous to the county’s security.

He criticized Facebook for being against the government to the extent of closing some of its accounts and said Facebook has no right to say who is good and who is bad in Uganda

“Facebook decided to block NRM message centers,” Museveni said in his speech, referring to the ruling National Resistance Movement.

“Why would anyone do that? I told my people to close it. If it is to operate in Uganda, it should be used equitably.”

He said that closing Facebook and other social media platforms are unfortunate but unavoidable. He however apologized to Ugandans who are affected by the closures.

Uganda is scheduled to hold elections Thursday. Social media was also closed down when the country went to the polls in 2016, to the disappointment of users.

Johnny Mapesa

Written by Johnny Mapesa

Johnny Mapesa is an award-winning Kenyan journalist who is driven with passion and has worked for several media brands both locally and internationally and currently working with African Stand.

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