President Yoweri Museveni has issued a directive to security forces ‘‘to locate very quickly’’ and arrest sources of fake news regarding his presumed death.
Museveni said during another swearing-in ceremony of cabinet ministers at Kololo Independence grounds on a cold Thursday afternoon that;- ‘‘Apparently, social media has been saying that I am dead. They (Security service) should locate very quickly- the one who tells such a story,’’
The claims that have become vocal, even after the president has made several public appearances- started circulating on the night of June 26 in form of multimedia from anonymous sources on microblogging platforms, including the government-banned Facebook mobile application.
‘‘The other day when I went to that side of Bombo to lay a foundation (for a project) people were looking at me with shock because social media reported that I was dead,’’ he said.
Mr. Museveni now says that security should solve what he describes as a non-security but rather idiotic problem.
‘‘Security service should solve that problem. I need to check with them (security service) so that we go for you. If you’re in Europe, we denounce you and say go to hell because you are wasting people’s time,’’ he warned.
Uganda has through the Covid-19 pandemic era witnessed an alarming rise in misinformation especially across social networks.
In a country where misinformation almost spreads faster than accurate information, communication scholar and lecturer at Uganda Christian University (UCU), Prof Monica Chibita told local newspaper in an interview that fake news always has an ‘‘undesirable outcome.’’
”There’s need for equipping and capacitating people at the receiving end on how to re-examine information before perceiving it as gospel truth,’’ she said in a recent interview with Daily Monitor.