The new Electoral Commission guidelines limit use of cameras and other devices ahead of UG 2021 elections

Through Twitter, a statement has been issued on the new Electoral Commission guidelines that will be followed regarding the use of cameras and other devices at different polling stations on election day this week. In a Twitter thread, the Electoral Commission has explained how the use of particular devices will be regulated.

Also read: Electoral Commission receives 38,500 biometric voter verification machines to avoid voter fraud.

This comes after many voters have claimed that their phones or cameras will be one of the most essential requirements come Thursday. We live in the digital era and you cannot deny the power of the internet as people have progressed to taking pictures and videos of certain events which has certainly made people accountable for their actions because of crystal clear evidence.

Read also: Apply now for the Uganda Tech Engineers Challenge 2020

People have aired concerns over the restrictions in the Electoral Commission guidelines on the use of cameras and other devices on election day as observed during the pre-election period. The Electoral Commission says it took note of this and that is why it has taken the liberty to guide people in their various capacities on the use of these devices on that day.

The statement issued about the Electoral Commission guidelines is as follows:

According to this statement, it looks like the Electoral Commission guidelines are only regulating the use of cameras and other recording devices to ensure anonymity and secrecy which is the clear cut principle of a secret ballot.

The EC believes that the elections can only be held in a free and fair manner if the ballot cannot be traced back to the person who cast it and by sharing photos or videos of ballot papers, this principle could be compromised.
Gadgets or recording devices will not be prohibited, its the manner in which they will be used that will be regulated. Taking pictures inside the polling stations will not be allowed.
No voter will be allowed in any way whether by taking a photo or a selfie, or recording a video display their choice of a candidate.
Voters are only allowed to mark their choices of candidates within the basin that will be provided. No one is supposed to mark outside it.
In one of it’s statements, it explains that using these gadgets to take photos or record videos violates the standard rule of a secret ballot which is clear cut in the Constitution which it quoted.
As it was during the campaigns, the EC insists that only accredited media personnel will be given permission to cover the events of that day. This means no free lance media might be allowed.
Recording devices will only be allowed to take photos or record videos when counting votes as the process will be conducted in an open manner for all to see.

However, voters believe that these devices are required to capture all the events of that day as they will ensure transparency incase of any unethical behavior like rigging and voter fraud.

READ: This portable PlayStation 4 is a real piece of art.

Stay on top - Get the daily news in your inbox