Following Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) order in which it asked 13 media houses to suspend some of their journalists over what they termed as violation of minimum broadcast standards, UCC has overturned the order.
The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) last week wrote to the regulator requesting for a meeting between broadcasters and UCC which was held on Tuesday.
Shortly after the meeting, NAB chairman, Kin Kariisa said they had agreed on a number of issues to be followed by both the media houses and UCC as investigations into the matter continue.
“We agreed that they (suspended journalists) will not leave media houses until investigations and results are done and are out,”Kariisa.
“They said investigations will be completed within 30 days and each media house is to be investigated individually.”
The Next Media chief executive officer also noted they would continue with their usual business as they wait for the outcome of the investigations.
The UCC Executive Director, Godfrey Mutabazi confirmed the affected journalists will be allowed to continue working despite not being in the same positions.
He noted that the affected journalists are only required to step aside from their current position until investigations are done.
“For us we don’t care whether they (journalists) are put in another position as long as they step aside from the current position to allow for investigations,”Mutabazi said.
He noted that the investigations will focus on breaching of minimum broadcast standards by various media houses in a given period of time.
Mutabazi insisted that media houses have for long violated the broadcasting standards especially in regards to live broadcasts.
“We have always engaged them (media houses) but they have continued to do things contrary to what we agreed to. Instead of news, they broadcast documentaries. Instead of documentaries, they bring hate speech,”Mutabazi said.
He noted that investigations will reveal whether the said journalists breached the minimum broadcasting standards or not.
UCC spokesperson, Ibrahim Bbosa said after investigations, aggrieved media houses will have a right to appeal against the outcome.
In their April 30 communication, UCC ordered a number of media houses including; NBS TV, NTV, Salt TV, BBS TV, Bukedde TV, Kingdom TV, Capital FM, CBS FM, Simba FM, Pearl FM, Akaboozi FM, Beat FM, and Sapientia FM, to suspend their producers, head of news and head of programs or else they risk sanctions prompting NAB to write back to them asking for a reversal of the orders.