On Thursday this week, Parliament approved the proposed 2021 scientific elections regulations. It’s on such grounds that the national broadcaster, Uganda Broadcasting Corporation (UBC) has asked government for Shs50b to facilitate activities of the forthcoming elections.
According to the Daily Monitor, James Tumusiime, the UBC board chairperson, ICT minister Judith Nabakooba, Finance Minister Maria Kasaija and Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga have recently engaged in meetings to find means of how government can financially boost UBC ahead of the elections that require the media for candidates to reach out to their respective supporters.
UBC has 11 other radio stations under it across the country and the management says they need to be allocated a budget to be able to broadcast the election activities.
“We were not allocated money in the Budget. We are still haggling. We were left out at the last minute in the national Budget. Immediately after that, government pronounced itself on that huge responsibility which they had given us,” Tumusiime said.
“We have to keep pressing. Otherwise, if they don’t fund us, how are we going to conduct these exercises? We assume they can see it’s essential,” he added.
UBC’s managing director, Mr Winston Agaba said that the money will be used to upgrade their equipment to enable them reach every home, especially in hard-to-reach areas. The funds will also help in recruitment of more staff to beef up the team and buying transmitters for the whole country to ensure equal airtime is given, especially to presidential candidates.