1 November 2012

Uganda: Critics React Angrily Over the Ban of the State of the Nation Play

Government bans play for criticizing it.

The Democratic Party (DP) President Norbert Mao says the play's co-director; John Ssegawa should seek justice from the courts of law in order to have his play on the market.

Mao said this while featuring on KFM radio talk show while reacting on how the Uganda's authorities banned a play that criticises President Yoweri Museveni's government.

Ssegawa says the Media Council had ordered performances of State of the Nation to be halted until a review was held.

The play highlights alleged corruption and poor governance in Uganda, ruled by Mr Museveni since 1986. However, according to reliable sources, the play was first taken to Media council for approval which the council did but later on banned it at the time when it was ready.

State of the Nation was staged earlier this month at the national theatre in Kampala, but the Media Council has now asked for further performances to be suspended, Mr Ssegawa said.

"It is critical of those in charge as they are the governors of the country and the state of the country is not good," he is quoted by the AFP news agency as saying.

"They [the regulatory body, the Media Council] told us that we cannot go ahead with the play until they have reviewed it."

State of the Nation was produced to coincide with the 50th anniversary of Uganda's independence, which was celebrated on 9 October.

Last week, the Republic of Ireland's government suspended financial aid to the Ugandan government because of alleged fraud. Mao says, "We condemn that act in the strongest terms. " He advised that the proprietors of the play should put a court injunction so that the ban is lifted.

Copyright © 2012 The Independent. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.