TikToker sentenced to six years for insulting first family

Edward Awebwa 24, in the dock at the Chief Magistrate in Entebbe on July 10, 2024. PHOTO | PAUL ADUDE

What you need to know:

  • Presiding Chief Magistrate Stellah-Maris Amabilisi, while delivering the sentence, emphasised that the person of the President, the First Lady and first son should be respected and the court has to see that such offences come to an end.

Entebbe Chief Magistrate’s Court has sentenced a 24-year-old TikToker to six years in prison for insulting the first family.

Edward Awebwa, a resident of Nsanvu Nama Sub-county in Mukono district, pleaded guilty last Friday to three charges of hate speech and one charge of disseminating misleading or malicious information.

Presiding Chief Magistrate Stellah-Maris Amabilisi, while delivering the sentence, emphasised that the person of the President, the First Lady and first son should be respected and the court has to see that such offences come to an end.

“The accused is pleading for mercy but he does not look remorseful at all for his acts, he is a person who was aware of what he was doing and court had opportunity to even see the video, the language that was being used was really vulgar. This court is of the opinion that the accused deserves a punishment which will enable him learn from his past so that next time he will respect the person of the president, the first lady and first son” she said.

Ms Amabilis added: "Taking into account the five days he has already spent in remand, the court sentences the accused as follows: six years imprisonment for each of the four counts, with the sentences to run concurrently at Kigo Upper Prison."

The prosecution argued that between February and March 2024, Awebwa used his TikTok account under the name 'Save Media Uganda' to share information that ridiculed or demeaned President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, First Lady Jane Kataaha Museveni, and their son, who is also the Chief of Defense Forces, Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba.

It was further alleged that Awebwa shared information online claiming there would be an increase in taxes related to the President.