Africa

Uganda bans media coverage of election result protests

Uganda's military police intervenes near a burning barricade on February 19, 2016 in Kampala. Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption There have been clashes between police and opposition supporters since the February election

Uganda has banned live media coverage of opposition protests against the re-election of President Yoweri Museveni.

The opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has called for a "defiance campaign" against the 71-year-old leader extending his 30-year rule.

Security forces have sealed off the home of its leader Kizza Besigye, who described February's vote as a "sham".

The government says media organisations could lose their licence if they cover the protest.

Those who cover the event on social media would also be punished, the head of Uganda's Communications Commission said.

Last week, a court ruled that what the opposition is calling a "defiance campaign" against the election result was illegal, but the FDC has insisted on going ahead with its activities.

Mr Museveni's victory was upheld by the Supreme Court in March.

Media organisations have been told not to carry out live interviews with opposition members or show their activities in real time during their protests.

Live television coverage has become a key part of the way political news is being reported in Uganda, says the BBC's Catherine Byaruhanga in the capital, Kampala.

There is currently a heavy military and police deployment around the city in anticipation of opposition action, our reporter adds.

Mr Museveni is to be sworn for a fifth term on 12 May.

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