How Ugandans beat the ban on social media


It was very simple to do.

Most of the country is still off social media and it has been hard for people to communicate with each other to instruct what to do.

The first message I got was at 2:00am AST (9am Uganda time).  “Leah, wake up, this is not a day for sleeping”.

The next message was “social media was cut off till after voting ends”.

Then “many polling stations have not received the ballot papers”.

In all this time one would be thinking, “I need to talk to some people to verify this information”.

Pick up the land line and call phone to phone and it is true, social media has gone to the dogs.


Some phones in Uganda were still accessing social media (at least Facebook).  Some of you might know which phones they are.

Some people quickly found Apps to download to unblock themselves.

Some people used Phone to Phone texting.

Some called.  Do you have any idea how much it costs for someone in Uganda to call Canada.  However some friends called because information was not flowing.

Everyone who called me has been getting updates via Phone Text since I have unlimited international texting.

The real nerds are using VPN.

It looks like EC and UCC might need to shut off the IP address for Uganda completely in order to put through the gag order completely.  I bet some geeks will still find ways.

I hear UCC is thinking of shutting down Media Houses.  Great because I have previously written about how Print Media is going out of business.  Go ahead.  Shut them down.  Put people out of work and you will never recover from it.  If you read HuffingtonPost, you will know how media has moved away from a physical location.

Future of print media for news for Uganda – there is none

Martha Leah Nangalama

Moncton, Canada


The writer is an IT analyst and follows Ugandan politics.


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