By Andrew Irumba
Kampala: The High Court in Kampala has set 14 January 2021, which is the gazetted national polling day, to deliver a ruling in a case filed by a section of journalists under their umbrella organization “Editors Guild Uganda” challenging the Media Council directives of accrediting journalists who intend to cover 2021 elections and other state events.
It all started last month when the Editors’ Guild Uganda and Centre for Public Interest Law dragged the government’s Attorney General to Court challenging the directive by the Uganda Media Council to have all journalists who are going to cover this year’s National Elections accredited by December 31st 2020.
As a result, the Editors filed an application maintaining that the directive by the council is illegal because;
2-It’s National Institute for Journalists Uganda (NIJU) mandated to give such directives and its now non-existent. The council has appointed itself to carry out a duty that doesn’t belong to it.
3-The timing and the spirit if the directives are suspicious.
4-That even if the council was to accredit journalists, they can’t do it within the short period they gave, given the fact that they’re too understaffed.
Therefore the applicants want a Judicial review and an order to quash the directives of the media council of Uganda issued relating to the same.
In addition, they want Court to order prohibition and permanent injunction restraining the respondent’s security agencies from implementing the illegal, irregular, and irrational directives of the media council.