Ugandan police on Wednesday used tear fuel and bullets to interrupt up a road protest towards a brand new tax concentrating on social media customers.
Two protesters have been arrested in downtown Kampala, the capital, after a scuffle during which some policemen have been assaulted, stated Luke Owoyesigire, a spokesman for Kampala police.
The protest was organised by a preferred lawmaker, Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, a pop star who’s one a gaggle of singers who say the tax may have unfavourable affect on the advertising and marketing of their music.
Police broke up the protest as a result of Ssentamu didn’t notify them of his plans, stated nationwide police spokesman Emilian Kayima.
Afterward Wednesday, Ugandan Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda advised lawmakers that the tax on social media, in addition to one other levy on a phone-based fee system often called cell cash, can be reviewed and a brand new invoice introduced subsequent week.
Since July 1, social media customers have been paying upfront a each day tax of UGX 200 (5 cents) to entry all social media web sites and apps, together with WhatsApp. The brand new levy is along with the standard information charges.
Amnesty Worldwide has urged Ugandan authorities to scrap the tax, calling it “a transparent try and undermine the correct to freedom of expression” on this East African nation.
About 17 million of Uganda’s 41 million individuals are lively Web customers, in line with authorities figures.
Uganda’s authorities, which is making an attempt to chop again on exterior borrowing, stated the brand new tax measures will assist finance huge infrastructure tasks like resurfacing the various roads which have potholes.
The tax on social media was first proposed by longtime President Yoweri Museveni, who complained about on-line gossip in a March letter that urged the finance minister to lift cash “to deal with the implications.”
Museveni has dominated Uganda since 1986.