Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Court adjourns open air radio talk-show case

Court Adjourns Open Air Talk-show (Bimeeza) case

Hearing of a case in which Uganda’s Broadcasting Council Chairman Godfrey Mutabaazi is expected to account for the banning of open air talk-shows has flopped.

Mutabaazi was summoned by high court judge Vincent Zehurikize to explain the ban imposed on open air radio talk shows commonly known as Bimeeza.

The open air talk-shows had been ran by many public and private radio stations as far as 2000 to provide platform to all members of the public to enhance their participation in the governance issues and holding their leaders accountable.

The ban which was communicated to the public by the minister of information, Princess Kabakumba Matsiko via radios and televisions and followed by a press release signed by the chairperson of the Broadcasting Council stated that “the shows were becoming difficult to manage no technical grounds saying, these programmes usually live broadcasts made in a hall and not in a studio”

He was dragged to court by Rubaga Division councilor Bukenya Church Ambrose who argued that the government was wrong to ban the open-talk shows saying, it was intended to gag the public, which he called a breach of the right to freedom of speech and free media guaranteed by the constitution of the Republic of Uganda.

Eraisha Bafiirawala who represented the attorney general told court that Mutabaazi was stuck in London and asked an adjournment.

Court adjourned the case for hearing on 8th/July/2010

For more information Contact;

Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda (HRNJ-Uganda)
Plot 16 Clement Hill Road Nakasero
P.O.Box. 71314 Clock Tower Kampala – Uganda
Tel: +256-414-667627 / +256-701-810079
E-mail: info@hrnjuganda.org
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