Business
Traditional healers petition court over advert ban
Publish Date: Jul 10, 2014
Traditional healers petition court over advert ban
Uganda Communication Commission Executive(UCC) Director, Godfrey Mutabazi. PHOTO/ Nicholas Oneal
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By Andante Okanya 
 
Traditional healers under umbrella body Uganda N’obuwangwa Bwaffe Limited, have petitioned court, challenging the advertisement ban imposed by regulator Uganda Communications Commission (UCC).
 
On June 27, they filed an application for judicial review at the civil division of the High Court in Kampala, protesting UCC’s directive to media houses on the ban.
 
The contentious directive was published in the New Vision edition of Thursday March 27, 2014. 
The umbrella body comprises traditional healers, herbalists and birth attendants.
 
Judicial review is conducted by the High Court to scrutinise proceedings plus decisions taken by subordinate courts, inferior tribunals or government bodies.
 
All media houses, both print and electronic, were instructed to halt publication of adverts promoting services of the various traditional healers, citing witchcraft.
 
Media houses were cautioned that failure to heed would attract penalties and sanctions in accordance with the law. 
But through Centre for Legal Aid, the traditional healers contend that the directive is imprecise, as it encompassed genuine traders of the umbrella body.
 
“The impugned directive is vague and ambiguous in so far as it fails to define ‘witchcraft’, ‘witchdoctor’ or ‘traditional doctor’,” the petition states in part.
 
Adding: “The impugned directive is overly broad, overreaching, and unfair as it tends to put traditional healers, herbalists and birth attendants in the same bracket as the so-called practitioners of ‘witchcraft’ and ‘fraudsters’, thus failing to separate wheat from chaff.” 
 
The application is supported by the affidavit of the umbrella association secretary general, Ssewaya Kiwanuka, who asserts that they were not consulted prior to the directive being effected.
 
He states that UCC should have instituted investigations on the unscrupulous individuals of ill-repute who abuse the laws of Uganda.
 
Kiwanuka also contends that the directive was an abuse of the right to freedom of expression, and an insult to the government policy of promoting indigenous medicine, complementary and natural  health care therapies.
 
UCC is yet to file its response. A hearing date is yet to be fixed.
 
Related Stories
 
 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Procuring and Disposing Entities (PDEs) of both public and private bodies have been advised to dialogue with bidders who do or are interested in doing business with them...
Shilling to weaken further, foreign currency denominated loans to suffer
Bankers have expressed concern over the continued depreciation of the shilling, saying the volatility will exert pressure on foreign currency denominated loans...
Access to finance biggest obstacle for MSMES
The biggest obstacle to business growth faced by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Uganda is access to finance, according to a survey released by FSD Uganda...
UNRA earmarks sh1.5bn for skills development
As the government moves to spend more on infrastructural development, UNRA has earmarked $500,000 (about sh1.5b) to register engineers in the country....
CSOs call for gov’t action on depreciating shilling
Civil society actors have expressed concern over the high US dollar-Ugandan shilling exchange rate, saying if ignored, it will have a negative impact on the implementation of the 2014/2015 financial budget....
Reflexologists granted permission to sue govt for loss
The Commercial Court in Kampala has granted reflexologists permission to sue government for losses suffered when a ban was imposed on their activities on March 24, 2011....
Will the ban of food vendors help eliminate typhoid?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter