Uganda government is to soon come up with a law which will subject all films entering the country to censorship. Ugandan legislators have, in recent times, expressed growing concerns over the issue of morality in the eastern African country. Last year, a proposed anti-homosexual bill was criticised by the international community. An anti-pornography bill is also under way.
A new law which will subject all films entering Uganda to censorship has been suggested by Member of Parliament Sarah Wasike Mwebaza, who has appealed to government to institute a special regulatory body to check and regulate films and the content of movies imported into the country.
“The regulation of the content of especially Nigerian movies will help rid the country of harmful practices like child sacrifices, witch craft, violence and kidnaps among others which negatively influence morals for Ugandans” she argued.
Sarah Wasike Mwebaza believes that there is sufficient evidence showing that Ugandans are copying witchcraft behaviour from Nigerian movies which are now easily accessible around the country.
Wasike who is also a member of the parliamentary committee on Gender, Labor and Social development committee said “The movies currently watched by adults and children have widely contributed to societal moral decay, They have led to increase in prostitution, murder and violence cases.”
Wasike urged parents and guardians to always scrutinize movies before availing them to kids to watch. She also called upon parents, teachers to be vigilant with their children against strangers.
The minister of ethics and integrity, James Nsaba Buturo said that a bill on pornography and movies will will soon be tabled in parliament and will deal with Wasike’s concerns.
According to James Nsaba Buturo, obscene movies “will soon be history” in the country if the bill is passed because they will not be allowed in.
The anti-pornography bill seeks to impose heavy fines or a 10-year jail sentence or both on any person found guilty of dealing in pornographic materials.
The minister also warned that a section of the new legislation will deal with activities on the internet. Internet owners will be liable to 5 years imprisonment if found guilty.
Early September, Mr. Buturo had been quoted saying: “Pornography breeds homosexuality. I am happy that finally a bill to curb pornography in Uganda is out to punish the promoters of the vice. The draft bill is already in cabinet for discussion”
In October 2009, an Anti-Homosexuality Bill was tabled in parliament by member of parliament David Bahati. The proposed law sought the death penalty against people convicted of aggravated homosexuality with minors and those who knowingly infect others with HIV.
The proposed anti-homosexual legislation, which also urged parents and school authorities to disclose any child believed to be gay, was criticised by the international community, including U.S. President Barack Obama, the Netherlands, the UK, France, Canada and Sweden which threatened to cut financial assistance.