Despite the prevailing porn ban in Uganda, it can safely be said that pornographic materials and information has never been more consumed than now.
It’s nearly two years since the government inaugurated the pornographic control committee to prevent the use or spread of pornographic materials and information.
However, the latest web rankings have put a pornographic website ahead of news and government websites.
Alexa, an American web traffic analysis company based in San Francisco on its website, ranks one of the porn sites ahead of all local websites, including news and government websites in Uganda.
The site that is residing on the mobile and desktop screens of Ugandans is Porn555. As of Tuesday, the Amazon subsidiary ranked the porn website in position six, behind Wikipedia and ahead of Daily Monitor, Twitter, BBC among others.
The site is also ranked number four in India.
In Uganda, Google.com and Youtube.com are in first and second positions respectively. As for the third position, it is graced by Facebook.com.
Yahoo.com and Wikipedia.org are in the fourth and fifth positions respectively.
Monitor.co.ug is the most popular local website currently sitting in position number seven.
This is followed by Researchgate.net and Ura.go.ug in that order. Twitter.com and Newvision.co.ug are ranked at 14th and 16th positions respectively.
When asked by this reporter whether the nine-member committee chaired by Dr Annette Kezaabu Kasimbazi is not working and how far they have gone, Ethics minister Simon Lokodo said the committee is active with some suspects already in court.
He said that with the help of Uganda Communications Commission (UCC), they have been able to deactivate about 30 porn sites in the country.
“As far as I know, we have suspects being prosecuted in court over production of pornographic materials and information. There are so many sites in the country and sometimes when you close some, others manoeuvre around the system and open more websites. Unlike before, we have also resolved that the committee starts visiting places where Ugandans, especially youth are suspected to be consuming porn materials from,” Mr Lokodo said.
He attributed the high rate of pornographic consumption to moral degenerations.
“Our youth’s morals today have badly degenerated. I blame this on their parents and their local leaders. Consumption of porn materials and information has serious social, physical and psychological side effects. It has led to family and marriage breakages in some cases,” Mr Lokodo said.
Recently, the minister, without providing evidence, claimed that office workers spend much of their time downloading and watching pornography. “Pornography is now eroding Uganda’s human resource,” he said, “this will in turn hinder the achievement of our vision.”
Expectations from the pornographic control committee
Ensure early detection and prohibition of pornography, apprehend and prosecute perpetrators, collect and destroy pornographic materials and objects. The team will also promote the rehabilitation of individuals affected by pornography, among others.