Kampala, Uganda; Patience Achola, 35 is the person at the centre of havoc with reliable sources indicating that she got smoked out of her work place and apparently surviving in hideouts life after daring the current political regime in Uganda.
A renowned political analyst and writer Patience worked with Metro FM Radio station between January 2011 and 2018. In her line of duty, she became a close associate to top opposition security circles which got her exposed to security agencies in Uganda.
It is evident that she used to write and report stories about protests, brutal arrests exercised by the police, military, anti-riot police and campaign rallies by different aspiring political candidates.
On her return to Uganda from the United States where she had gone to attend a Film Festival, Patience was detained at Entebbe International Airport. Her Camera and Laptop were confiscated and held for hours for questioning on her source of stories, she was later released.
Since then life became hard for Patience as a journalist, she became a security target and blacklisted on most of government held events. Security organs jeopardized her freedom of Press as she could no longer express her political opinions or work.
Later her work station metro FM was issued with strict guidelines by the Uganda communications commission(UCC) the body which governs all media houses in Uganda, which had to be adhered to before broadcasting any content on air and failure to do so led to automatic switching off of the radio station. This again threatened her relationship with her bosses who issues her strict warnings.
A close ally and supporter of opposition leader Dr Kiiza Besigye and Law Maker Hon Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine, she is reportedly on security radar after organizing and promoting several opposition political social media campaigns.
After fleeing the country, it is alleged that Patience was the brain behind the popular #FreeBobiWine protests both online and the one held at Waltham square in August 2018 in the United States.
She has been closely monitored by The Uganda Police force and sister agencies, Patience has been a victim of torture and abuse by the Police force among other journalists who have covering protests by Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu that after the infamous Arua saga on August 31 2018.
Political Journalists in Uganda have faced harassment and arbitrary restrictions, particularly those covering activities of the opposition or stories unflattering to President Yoweri Museveni.
It should be remembered that in 2016 authorities, without warning, blocked access to social media websites twice: on election day in February, and again in May as Museveni took the oath of office following his reelection.
Independent political reporting and analysis in print and on radio have been met by increasing government threats, intimidation, and harassment. In some cases, these threats are overt, such as public statements by a resident district commissioner that a journalist should be eliminated, or a police summons on charges of sedition, incitement to violence, or promoting sectarianism for criticizing government action in a newspaper article or radio. In many more cases, the threats are covert, such as phone calls—some anonymous and others from well-known ruling party operatives—intimating violence or loss of employment if a journalist pursues a certain issue or story.
It is well known that the Ugandan government uses its national laws to bring charges against journalists, restrict the number of people who can lawfully be journalists, revoke broadcasting licenses without due process of law, and practice other forms of repression.
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