Internet Interruption as Museveni Swears in For New Term

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In short
Deogracious Katongole, a political science student at Makerere University told URN at around 11am that he had also tried to access the Daily Monitor website in vain. According to Katamba, some of his colleagues decided to Virtual Private Network-VPN, which allows user to send and receive data across shared or public networks as if their computing devices were directly connected to the private network

There was limited access to some websites in the country this morning as the swearing in ceremony for president, Yoweri Museveni got underway at Kololo independence ground. Some internet users complained that they couldn't access some websites while other sites were too slow throughout the day.
 
  
Our reporter tried to access the Daily Monitor and the Observer online versions in vain. The search directed URN to the Mobile monitor, which was also inaccessible. This site can't be reached mobile.monitor.co.ug's server DNS address could not be found.
 
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Deogracious Katongole, a political science student at Makerere University told URN at around 11am that he had also tried to access the Daily Monitor website in vain. According to Katamba, some of his colleagues decided to install the Virtual Private Network-VPN application, which allows user to send and receive data across shared or public networks as if their computing devices were directly connected to the private network
  
An employee of one of the Radio stations in Gulu told URN on condition of anonymity, that they also had difficulties to access Gmail and Daily monitor online between 8:00am to 9:00am. Dr. George Lugalambi, a Media Consultant, said although he had been able to navigate through several sites with the help of VPN, internet connectivity was general slow.
 
 
However, when URN visited both the Observer Media limited and Daily Monitor offices, they said they had not met any challenges to access their websites except for social media.  "We have not received any complaint of the website being down, so we hope everything is okay. We only have a challenge on social media" Carol Beyanga, the Managing Director Digital at Daily Monitor said.  
 
She also said most of their reporters were using their phones to file reports since they have installed security applications, which help them to skirt barriers. Isaac Kalembe, a Communications Officer with Uganda Communications Commission, says they only blocked social media following a directive from government.
 
 
Godfrey Mutabazi, the UCC Executive Director told URN on phone that they were not blame for the websites that were inaccessible. He said whereas UCC has an influence on social media, it can't limit access to the entire internet. Our reporter failed to get official comments from internet service providers in the country. However, a source at Africell, said he was not aware about the restriction on some websites.

 

About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.