The Ugandan communications regulator has beenr eported to have ordered a social media shutdown days before their general election.
According to AFP, in a letter seen by the publication, the Uganda Communications Commission executive director, Irene Sewankambo ordered telecommunications companies to “immediately suspend any access and use” of social media and online messaging platforms.
This development comes a day after Facebook was reported by the same publication to have shutdown accounts of top Ugandan officials ahead of the election. Facebook said that the officials had exhibited “coordinated inauthentic behavior” which involved using multiple accounts in concert to engage in inauthentic behaviour.
The latest development to shutdown social media in Uganda is not a surprise. In 2016, we saw reports of social media being shutdown in the country and it plunged millions of Ugandans into internet ‘darkness’. The country has also been involved in banning VPNs to stifle social media tax dodgers as well as blocking unauthorized news websites in the country.