“I am told journalists take bribes to talk about Kizza Besigye and Amama Mbabazi,” President Yoweri Museveni has said.
“This is wrong,” the president pointed out at his Morolinga State Lodge in Napak District press conference.
The same conference was ignored by media houses which concentrated on tweeting the Pope’s mass in Nairobi Kenya.
Museveni alluded to youth livelihood fund saying journalists too needed such to avoid taking bribes.
“Even you the journalists could benefit from a fund instead of taking bribes.”
He added:I hear politicians bribe you. That is wrong. You should not allow your ethical obligation to be abused.”
Only yesterday, the NRM Secretary General, Kasule Lumumba, said media was biased and ignoring Museveni, adding that out of his 70 rallies, some media houses haven’t even covered 20 rallies.
A recent Media Monitoring Report for the month of October released by the African Centre for Media Excellence (ACME) shows that Mbabazi was leading Museveni in being allocated more space in newspapers.
Amama scored 47.6%, Museveni 36.5% while Besigye scored 12.1% presence in the media.
This trend is not going well with the ruling party which now accuses media of favouring one candidate over the others.
The president advised journalists to create a SACCO and avoid bribery.
“You will achieve progress through wealth creation not bribery,” he said.
He also vowed to kick opposition out of Kampala through the positive work of the NRM.
Addressing press at State House Entebbe recently, Museveni said he heard that journalists also get money to report “this and that”.
“We won’t allow people to spoil our politics through monetisation,” he warned.
“Your [Journalists] lips are sowed, sealed and zipped through money handouts,” the president said.
Saying the journalists risked being irrelevant, Museveni urged press to be the ones to expose those who do ills in society.
“I wanted to give your Sacco money to support you so you are not bribed.”
He said the sacco would also help journalists from over depending on employers who treat them as slaves.
“There was a boy called Daniel Kalinaki [Ugandan journalist working with the Nation Media Group as Managing Editor] who said I should not put money in your sacco for production. It would be good for you to be empowered.”
Museveni said this was the only way to free journalists from temptation to take bribes.
“If you become mercenaries, who will depend the public?”