Presidential candidate Willy Mayambala has said he plans to send Ugandans text messages if he can get their phone numbers of Ugandans from the National Registration and Identification Authority (NIRA) as a means to reach many voters.
candidate Willy Mayambala has said he plans to send text messages to
Ugandans if he can get their phone numbers from the National
Registration and Identification Authority (NIRA).
says that this move will not only allow him reach several people in
parts of the country that he has not reached, but also help minimize the
spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
In a message sent
by his campaign team, Mayambala apologized for not going to some
districts due to personal challenges. He however hopes that he will use
the media to reach some of those places.
explains that his next plan is now to get to the data base of NIRA, so
he can get the phone numbers of all Ugandans and send the text messages
among others to vote him. He says this will help him reach many people
//Cue in: “ And in that…
Cue out:…keep social distance.”//
NIRA spokesperson Gilbert Kadilo said that they cannot hand over
peoples' telephone numbers even though they do have the data base with
He says this was against data privacy issues, and
also against the background that many people would not want unsolicited
for messages jamming their phones all the time.
“It is not possible, we may not help him, but maybe he can see what the telecom companies say,” says Kadilo.
to the UCC guidelines on provision of text and multimedia messaging in
Uganda, service providers shall respect confidentiality of customer’s
personal information and shall not sell, distribute or divulge such
information to any other party without the explicit consent of the
customer, except in circumstances accepted by law.
exceptions are when the communications have been initiated by Government
for public interest, like communicating diseases, and emergencies among
The SMS are usually sent by aggregators who work alongside telecom companies to send the messages.
to Uganda Communications Commission, since telemarketing was bothering
several phone users, the Commission has since then required that all
persons engaged in SMS based value-added services, including network
operators, SMS application providers, among others ensure that their
communication is sent out to only persons that have subscribed for such
information. They also require that one can opt-out freely from such
When contacted, customer care agents at both MTN
and Airtel told Uganda Radio Network - URN on phone that it was not
possible to send out political messages to vote a candidate, and it is
not also possible to give out phone contacts to politicians.