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Internal affairs minister vows to crash critical media.

Uganda’s new Internal Affairs minister, General Aronda Nyakairima has sternly warned critical media and civil society activists. He singled out the enforcement of stricter media regulations and restraining non-governmental organizations engaging in activities different from those they registered for as some of his priority areas. “Recently Monitor and Red Pepper were closed and there were undertakings made. I will be checking on them whether they are followed because Red Pepper again is going back to the old business.” Nyakairima warned. The former Chief of Defence Forces also thanked the Inspector General of Police, Gen. Kale Kayihura “for cracking down on protestors.” Nyakairima’s approval to cabinet stirred controversy because he is a serving army officer who is not allowed to be politically biased. He made the remarks at his hand over ceremony from his predecessor, Eng. Hillary Onek at the Ministry of Internal Affairs headquarters in Kampala. He vowed to crack down on what he termed as ‘unprofessional’ media practitioners, “The media must do professional research. If you can't research, you have no business of holding a camera. Go and research, therefore as you have the right to do your work, people have the right to be actually informed and helped.” In May this year, the government arbitrarily closed down four media houses; namely Daily Monitor, Red Pepper, K-FM and Dembe FM radio over a controversial letter authored by the former coordinator of intelligence services, Gen. David Sejusa formerly Tinyefuza. They were re-opened after 11days with strict conditions. Human Rights Network for Journalists-Uganda led journalists and camped at the closed Monitor offices at Namuwongo, they were brutally dispersed by police, which arrested and charged some of them.


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