Ugandan authorities are reported to have ordered internet service providers to shut down all social media platforms and messaging apps on Tuesday until further notice. The move comes just a few days before the Presidential election in the East African country.
The move which has generated world wide condemnation, was announced in a letter from the country’s communications regulator.
“Uganda Communications Commission hereby directs you to immediately suspend any access and use, direct or otherwise, of all social media platforms and online messaging applications over your network until further notice,” said the letter from the commission’s executive director to internet providers.
According to Reuters, the commission’s spokesman Ibrahim Bbossa and government spokesman Ofwono Opondo did not answer calls requesting comment. An aide to Minister of Information Judith Nabakooba said she was unable to comment at the moment.
A source in Uganda’s telecom sector said the government had made clear to executives at telecoms companies that the social media ban was in retaliation for Facebook blocking some pro-government accounts.
The U.S. social media giant said on Monday it had taken down a network in Uganda linked to the country’s ministry of information for using fake and duplicate accounts to post ahead of this week’s election.
Ugandan dictator, Yoweri Museveni is running for the Presidential seat that will see him extended his over 30-years rule in the country. He is 76-years