STATEMENT BY THE PUBLIC RELATIONS ASSOCIATION OF UGANDA ON THE ON-GOING IMPASSE BETWEEN UGANDA GOVERNMENT AND SOME MEDIA HOUSES
The Public Relations Association of Uganda (PRAU) notes with concern the on-going tensions and continued siege of some media houses in the country notably: The Pepper Publications, The Monitor Publications, Dembe FM and KFM.
The events leading to the closure and continued siege of these media houses by the Uganda Police Force have been well documented and need not to be reiterated here.
As the apex body of all Public Relations and Corporate Communications professionals in Uganda, PRAU enjoys a healthy and professional relationship with a broad spectrum of organizations in its ranks including the affected media houses and the Uganda Police among other Government Departments.
As such the current impasse is of great concern and one the Association membership is greatly disturbed about. Freedom of the press is enshrined in our Constitution. It is a fundamental right in any democratic dispensation and its violation can negatively impact the democratic space and have far reaching economic ramifications to the country if violated.
Uganda has been lauded for its vibrant and independent press within the region and beyond. This recognition has had its knock on benefits that has portrayed the country in positive light on the African continent and duly earned Uganda its place on the pedestal of progressive and democratic states in the World. Part of this credit belongs to the Government and people of Uganda.
It is therefore imperative that the Government upholds the fundamental rights of the press provided for under the Constitution of Uganda to ensure that this well deserved respect is not besmirched by the current and unproductive bickering which has caused undue paralysis, put the country under international spot-light risking to ruin Uganda’s enviable past achievements.
PRAU and its members therefore implores the Uganda Government and members of the Uganda Media to reach an amicable understanding that ensures professionalism and democratic principles enshrined in our Constitution are protected by all concerned and the current stand-off concluded to ensure that the affected media houses can return to their normal operations henceforth.
We believe this is possible and urge all the protagonists to respect and play by the rules expected of any democratic society. Where differences fester, these should be amicably resolved in the competent Courts of Uganda.
PUBLIC RELATIONS ASSSOCIATION OF UGANDA May 24 th
Public Relations Association of Uganda (PRAU) Christeve House 3 rd
Floor, Suit 11, Nkurumah Road P.O. Box 3206. Tel: 0414598786. www.prauganda.com