The Ugandan Government has closed down 23 radio stations, based on the reason they promote witchcraft and try to dupe people of their hard-earned money.
The directive to shut down 23 stations has made a lot of people in the broadcast industry to be in amazement, as it was gathered that the licenses of radio stations who hosted several guests who claimed they could heal diseases like HIV, were all taken.
A spokesperson for Uganda’s communications regulator, UCC, Pamela Ankunda, told newsmen that the decision was taken following the radio stations has ignored continuous warnings against advertising and promoting witchcraft.
“The commission makes reference the public notice of 27th March 2014… where all broadcasters were warned against advertising and promoting witchcraft.
“The commission has noted with concern that despite these several warnings your undertaking not to advertise and promote witchcraft… and the public outcry against such misuse of the airwaves, your station has continued to advertise and promote witchcraft in contravention of section 2 of the witchcraft act,” states a letter from the commission.
Pamela concluded by saying the radio stations accused of assisting and abetting fraudulent activities by permitting fraudsters to use their station to con people through promotion of healing powers, will resume broadcasts if they only agree with the broadcasting standards.
Uganda has a vibrant FM radio segment, with more than 270 radio stations on air. The serious competition for a limited advertising pool has left many broadcasters with no option than to collect advertising from whoever comes into their radio studio with money.
Due to the advancing technology, Uganda radio stations are also found on the internet with all sorts of music ranging from hip-hop, reggae, and rock. Political debates are also interesting issues on the radio, you get to know what’s on people’s mind and how the country operates.
Some of these advertisers are herbalists and sellers of lucky charms, the practice the regulator has interpreted as promotion of witchcraft and fraud.