The Ugandan government has ordered internet service providers to block all social media platforms and messaging apps until further notice ahead of its upcoming election. 76 year old Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has called social media groups arrogant.
He said, “That social channel you are talking about, if it is going to operate in Uganda, it should be used equitably by everybody who wants to use it. If you want to take sides against the [ruling party], then that group will not operate in Uganda.”
The social media platforms were subsequently being used for media campaigning by candidates who are running against Museveni, including politician Bobi Wine.
The social media platforms suspended include: WhatsApp, Twitter, Signal, Facebook and Viber. Ugandans have complained that they do not have access to their accounts.
The events leading to the Ugandan election have turned out violent, as Bobi Wine was allegedly beaten and raided in his home by security on Tuesday.
The electoral commission has also informed voters to follow covid 19 guidelines.
Wine on Tuesday alleged his home was raided and staff beaten by security forces ahead of the election.
Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, said the ruling party was trying to scare voters away from the ballot box and urged them to record any abuses or irregularities on polling day.
“We encourage all voters to stay and guard the vote,” he told reporters in Kampala, flanked by two other opposition candidates.
But the electoral commission has told voters to go home quickly after casting their ballot due to coronavirus precautions.
On Monday, Facebook shut dozens of accounts belonging to Ugandan government officials accused of seeking to manipulate public debate ahead of the votes.