High Court Orders Media Council to Halt Registration of Journalists Over Lack of Legal Mandate

High Court Orders Media Council to Halt Registration of Journalists Over Lack of Legal Mandate

The High court of Kampala yesterday issued a directive to the media council to halt the registration of journalist as planned over lack of legal mandate and that its orders were irrational.

“An order of …. Is issued quashing the illegal registration and accreditation of journalists to cover the 2021 General Election and other State events by the Media Council of Uganda for being illegal, irrational and procedurally irregular,” Justice Nambayo ruled.
The judge further declared that the registration of journalists by the Media Council of Uganda without an operational National Institute of Journalists of Uganda to enroll journalists in accordance with the Press and Journalists Act is illegal.

The media council, a government body promotes and regulates good ethical standards and disciplines of journalists, issued a directive on December 10th 2020 ordering every journalist to participate in the general elections of 2021, to be accredited by registering. The body argued that the process was for the safety of journalists.

On 31st December journalists under their association of Editors Guild Uganda and the center for public interest Law petitioned court citing lack of legal mandate by the media council to issue such orders.