African Media Barometer Uganda 2012

TitleAfrican Media Barometer Uganda 2012
Publication TypeBook
Subtitle / Series TitleFesmedia Country Report
Year of Publication2012
PublisherFriedrich Ebert Stiftung

Uganda’s constitution guarantees not only freedom of expression but also the right to access information. In spite of this, a growing number of repressive laws undermine these freedoms. State surveillance structures create a climate of fear among journalists, resulting in increasing self-censorship, and decreasing investigative reporting. Even though the Access to Information Act of 2005 was operationalized in April 2011 media houses are often not able to obtain documents from state authorities and hence refrain from publishing stories, fearing the legal implications of not reporting accurately.The national broadcaster is still state owned and lacks independence. Community broadcasters operate in an unclear regulatory environment exposing them to state interference. Corruption among journalists is on the increase due to worsening working conditions in the less well established media houses. The self-regulatory Independent Media Council of Uganda (IMCU) has failed to take off and is not operating. The lack of unity among media organisations as well as government resistance to the IMCU may have contributed to its failure. On the positive side, a constitutional ruling in August 2010 abolished the law on sedition.  This led to the throwing out of a number of government cases against journalists who were charged under this law. African Media Barometer Uganda 2012Other Country Reports  The African Media Barometer (AMB)Even though most African countries enshrine principles of freedom of expression in their constitution, the practice often leaves much to be desired. The African Media Barometer (AMB) identifies and analyses the shortcomings and best practices in the legal as well as practical media environment of different African countries. Using a variety of African documents as a benchmark, the AMB can serve as a tool to lobby for media reform.The African Media Barometer is an in-depth and comprehensive description system for national media environments on the African continent, based on home-grown criteria derived from African Protocols and Declarations like the “Declaration of Principles on Freedom of Expression in Africa” (2002) by the African Commission for Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR). The instrument was jointly developed by fesmedia Africa, the Media Project of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) in Africa, and the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) in 2004.The recommendations of the AMB-reports are integrated into the work of the 19 country offices of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) in sub-Saharan Africa and into the advocacy efforts of other media organizations like the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA).

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