Uganda: Parliament Insists on Re-Opening of NTV, Fails to Secure Deadline

Regulation & Policy

Parliament has reaffirmed its position that Nation Television (NTV) must be re-opened. "A committee investigated this matter. We have made resolutions. Let's restate our position that NTV should be reopened and leave the rest to government," the Deputy Speaker, Rebecca Kadaga, said.

This followed two days of debate that pitted backbenchers against the executive on why the $4m project had not taken off. NTV was switched off by the Broadcasting Council on February 1 on grounds that some of its equipment did not meet required standards. In early April Information Minister Kirunda Kivejinja said: "Uganda Broadcasting council (UBC) is ready to put NTV on air as soon as the legal and procedural requirements are complied with.”

He said purchase of the required gadgets for UBC to host it on the 200m mast would be done. Attempts by security minister Amama Mbabazi to give an account of why NTV was off air were rejected.

Kivejinja told the House that NTV had written to the Ministry of Works requesting for an engineer to assess the quality of the short mast to carry the extra weight of NTV antennas. He said applicants for television licences were required to make a pre and post-installation inspection of their equipment by the council.

New Vision