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US condemns Uganda social media blockage


US ambassador to Uganda, Deborah R. Malac, has added her condemning voice to the blocking of social media platforms by the Ugandan government.

Malac is leading a US delegation supporting the Women Situation Room [WSR] Uganda, a platform for early warning and a rapid response mechanism against election related violence and conflict.

“Peace is in our hands,” the US mission in Uganda tweeted, quoting the ambassador to have said.

Malac visited the WSR and praised their work.

“Great to see their work. Hope all those who want to vote are able to vote,” she said.

She then turned attention to an incident in which government blocked Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp and mobile money platforms.

“Blocking people’s right to communicate on this important day sends wrong message to Ugandans.”

Malac said she visited several polling sites in Kampala today.

“[It is] important everyone who wants to vote has an opportunity to vote,” she said.

Voting kicked off past midday in most parts of Kampala and Wakiso district due to delays in delivery of election materials.

Later the electoral commission apologised and denied having ordered the Uganda Communications Commission to block social media.

UCC boss Eng Godfrey Mutabazi, said they had blocked social media and mobile money to stop voter bribery and late campaigning.

President Yoweri Museveni also spoke on the matter saying the platforms were blocked to stop the spreading of lies by opposition members.


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