By Nangayi Guyson
KAMPALA,UGANDA–The independent news Medias that were raided by Uganda police and closed for 10 days mid this month over president Museveni’s succession talk have re-opened today under tough conditions .
The outgoing Internal Affairs Minister Hillary Onek on Thursday told journalists at the government Media Centre that Daily Monitor should resume operations normally after agreeing to a number of conditions.
According to the minister, the Nation Media Group executives acknowledged that there had been violations of their editorial policy by their reporters and editors in Uganda. They availed government with a copy of their Editorial Policy and undertook to ensure that both the letter and the spirit of the policy are respected.
Meanwhile, The Red Pepper Publications, another daily tabloid that was also closed together with the Monitor Publications on May 20 has remained closed. Minister Onek said he is set to hold a separate meeting with officials from the publication later today.
On 20 May, police in Uganda raided two newspapers, The daily Monitor and The red pepper and also closed two radio stations KFM and DembeFM as they searched for the letter that was believed to have been written by Coordinator of Intelligence Services Gen. David Sejusa to the head of the internal security service ordering an investigation into allegations that those opposed to Museveni’s son as a future leader could be targeted for assassination.
Since then police had occupied the premises of these media houses without showing a sign of leaving even after the court cancelled the search warrant.
Thousands of journalists including workers who were employed by these media houses have been jobless for 10 days.
Medias in Uganda have been enjoying some freedom for more than a decade until in recent years when the media started reporting repeatedly on corruption scams and police harassments on civilians during walk- to- work protests that were led by Col. Dr. Kizza Besigye former Leader of the largest political party known as the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC).
Though, Gen. David Sejusa who is now wanted and is hiding in Britain accepted that he authored the letter, police continued to question its source. The Managing Editor Don Wanyama of daily monitor newspapers and two reporters Risdel Kasasira ,Richard Wanambwa were interrogated by police and charged with refusal to cooperate and divulge information in relation to the Gen. David Sejusa affair.
Since the letter was exposed by the daily monitor newspaper, the news headlines in several Medias across the country and the words on the lips of many in Uganda for the past weeks have been on President Museveni’s Succession plan.
The Uganda Communication Commission warned media houses against reporting on developments around Gen David Sejusa Tinyefunza and the ‘Muhoozi project’ which it said was regarded as sensitive and national security matter.
David Sejusa, one of only six generals in the Ugandan military and a member of its high command, Many of Museveni’s bush comrades have been opposing the so-called “Project Muhoozi” which is expected to be activated after president Museveni leaves power.
Though Museveni himself has shown no any sign of leaving power or handing it over to his first son Muhoozi Kainerugaba who has been rapidly promoted with high army ranks, Many Army generals have started to struggle for power and the army is getting divided.
According to Joseph Luzige, Sejusa’s lawyer, the general is not expected to become to back to Uganda soon and he has been granted —the protection of British police after reporting a threat to his life