The Board chairperson of Aulogo FM in Adjumani District, Mr Williams Anyama, has sacked Mr Amacha Goli, a talk show host.
Mr Anyama in his July 6 letter directed the station manager to submit a detailed written explanation on the circumstances surrounding the planned radio talk show meant to host former presidential contender Dr Kizza Besigye and other officials, which was stopped by government security agencies and led to a scuffle at Aulogo.
“By copy of this letter, you (Amacha) are directed to be out office to pave way for investigation into this matter and required you to hand over to the programme manager with immediate effect. You will be notified after receiving the document from you and carrying out investigation into the matter,” the letter reads in part.
Mr Julius Asiimwe, the station manager of Aulogo FM, said they took action to ease pressure mounting from some sections of NRM supporters who felt the media had given too much leverage to Opposition figures to express their views.
“We received and receipted money worth Shs1.6 million charged for the scheduled two hours talk show. I was told to inform the Resident District Commissioner and the District police commander as far as security matters within the district is concerned, which I did and later police and Uganda People’s Defence Forces were deployed at the station and cancelled the show,” he said.
Speaking to Daily Monitor on Wednesday, Mr Goli, said: “The letter was written in a hurry and full of emotions by a cowardly politician. I do not deal with talk shows. I don’t know why the failings of the management could have been blamed on me. This is a political witch hunt. In any case, the talk show was also aborted and it was not me who was to host it. I didn’t know about the show.”
He added: “What is wrong with hosting [former Forum for Democratic Change party president Kizza] Besigye on the radio station? This is an attempt to curtail media freedom in Adjumani in order to be inclined to one party. This is unethical and unprofessional because some of the media are owned by the party members and journalists are pressured on doing public relations story.”
“We appeal to human rights organisations and legal fraternities to come to our rescue because we are society’s mirror, which is now being broken by politicians who own these radio stations and want us to dance to their tunes,” he said.
Dr Besigye said: “Government has no explanation to pull us out from radio stations. They are spoiling radio businesses. We had paid Shs1.6 million in Adjumani for a talk show of only two hours. This is also charged on us exorbitantly to keep us off. But we paid. But police came and stopped us. But we shall keep on fighting for our rights.”
Besigye denied air Time
“The longest I have talked on all the radio stations I moved to, is 15 minutes, and this is only when you do not announce. This is done by a panicking regime that does not want us to mobilise people and mobilise resources,” former FDC president Kizza Besigye said.
In March 2016. The Fourth Estate was supposed to be broadcast at Besigye’s home in Kasangati but the team was blocked.
In April. Police in Mubende District raided Mubende FM and switched it off air in attempt to stop Dr Besigye from appearing on a live talk show.
On Saturday, April 13 and April 4, Kiira FM based in Jinja and Hope Radio in Kabale Municipality were switched off air respectively, a few minutes into the shows.