WEEKLY REVIEW; 19th – 30th August 2019

The 2nd edition of Uganda Golf Club Ladies Open at Kitante on 24th August was as colourful as anticipated. One of the sponsors of the annual event for the second year running, UCC was represented by the Director of Corporate Affairs Mr. Fred Otunnu, who was also chief guest. Mr. Otunnu said UCC was proud to be associated with the Ladies Section of Uganda Golf Club. The event, which attracted hundreds of golfers, was won by Ms. Martha Babirye. Uganda Golf Club Ladies Captain Anne Abeja thanked UCC and other sponsors for contributing to the growth of the game in Uganda, particularly among women. Days earlier, a press conference organized to launch the event was attended by, among others, the UCC Head Public and International Relations Mr. Ibrahim Bbosa.

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Realising that stocking computer labs with equipment is not enough, UCC is going a step further to boost the skills set of secondary school teachers who run these facilities. To that end, the Rural Communications Development Fund (RCDF) continued its country-wide ICT capacity building workshops for secondary school teachers in Gulu on Tuesday, 21st August and Moroto on Thursday, 23rd August. The programme, which was earlier launched in Mbale and Jinja, is set to move to Masindi and Arua; Kabale, Mbarara and Fort Portal; and Kampala, Masaka and Mubende in the coming weeks.

Organised by RCDF in partnership with Kisubi Associated Writers Agency (KAWA), the programme aims to deepen the integration of ICTs in teaching and learning in Uganda’s schools. The training areas include computer usage and monitoring software, computer maintenance, eLearning, ICT clubs in schools, and digital libraries.

Underlining what is at stake, Ms. Agnes Naddembe, a Ministry of Education and Sports official who attended the workshop in Mbale, advised teachers to yearn for ICT skills or risk finding themselves unemployable in the near future.

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When the UCC Director of Corporate Affairs Mr. Fred Otunnu flagged off the cast of 94 Terror as they flew out to Ghana for the 5th edition of the Golden Movie Awards, he challenged them to bring home at least three awards out of the eight categories they were nominated for. Well, the actors who won the people’s choice award at the Uganda Film Festival in Kampala last year, ended up winning seven in Accra.

The Golden Movie awards, an annual celebration of excellence in African television and film, held its gala on 24th August 2019 at the Movenpick Ambassador Hotel in Accra.

The contingent of 94 Terror, a movie about the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, was led by Mr. Richard Mulindwa, its writer and director, who was nominated and won the Golden Director award, among other accolades. Other big winners included Rashidah Nalubega, Nkalubo Ronnie Abraham and Ronah Ninsiima.

Uganda Communications Commission has been at the forefront of supporting the film industry in Uganda through its annual Uganda Film Festival, which recognizes outstanding locally produced films.

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The Commission responded to a request for a meeting by the Association of Uganda Tour Operators (AUTO) to discuss the impact of negative publicity on the tourism sector.

Led by the chairman, Everest Kayondo, AUTO petitioned the communications sector regulator to closely monitor information flow so as to limit the damage negative publicity does to their businesses and the economy.

Mr. Kayondo, who led a delegation of five members to the UCC head office at Bugolobi on Wednesday, 28th August, 2019, said the tour operators’ association he leads represents more than 200 members, who run tourism firms engaged in attracting tourists for safari and other attractions in the country.

At the Commission, Mr. Kayondo, who was flanked by the association’s Chief Executive Officer Ms Gloria Tumwesigye, had a two-hour engagement with senior UCC officers led by Mr Andrew Otim, the acting Director of Corporate Affairs.

Mr. Otim welcomed AUTO to the Commission and assured them that UCC was doing its best to check information that doesn’t meet the minimum standards in electronic and online media.

Mr. Meddie Kaggwa, the UCC Head of Multimedia, told the visitors that there is need for a mindset change among Ugandans who tend to look for the negative in everything, while Mr. Ibrahim Bbosa, the Head of Public and International Affairs advised the visitors to consider making formal complaints for the regulator to actor upon where necessary.

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ABS TV appeared before the Commission for a hearing on complaints that the station had aired content deemed to be in breach of minimum broadcasting standards.

ABS TV was accused of broadcasting adult-oriented content that contained pornographic material with no warnings to the public on the theme and nature of the content. In addition, the content was broadcast during day-time with children likely to be watching TV. Led by the proprietor, Pastor Augustine Yiga, ABS TV staff apologized for the content that depicted sexual activity between 11.00am-12pm on 23rd August, 2019.

The Programmes Manager Albert Luswata said he had cleared the offending movie knowing that it was free from disturbing content only to realize that what was airing on TV was different. Mr. Luswata said the errant staff member responsible for the mishap had gone into hiding after the case was reported at Kawaala Police Station.

The UCC Head of Multimedia Mr. Meddie Kaggwa noted that although they had apologised to the Commission, ABS TV had not found it necessary to apologize to its viewers. He also pointed out that it was not the first time ABS TV has been dragged to UCC on account of minimum broadcasting standards.

Mr. Kaggwa said a report would be filed following the hearing, and thereafter a decision taken on the fate of ABS TV.

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