Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) Uganda and South Sudan has announced August 25th and 26th as the dates for their 6th edition of the Uganda Social Media Conference.
The announcement was made by Nicholas Opolot of KAS Uganda, who is also the Conference Coordinator during an online briefing with members of the press.
The conference which brings together key stakeholders from government, civil society, academia, and the media for an exchange on the state and impact of social media on society is set to be held virtually for all and sundry using social media live stream tools and partnering TV Stations.
“We have chosen to go virtual due to the existing situation in Uganda (pandemic) and the challenges that come with crowds and gatherings.” Opolot said.
Running under the theme “Digital Democracy in a Post Pandemic Era”, the 2021 Uganda Social Media Conference will be tracking some of the challenges facing the internet and freedom of speech online to galvanize social media action and to create a platform for stakeholders to discuss development issues that come with social media.
The conference will also be highlighting how Social Media has facilitated citizen journalism, Elections in Africa, its impact on mental health among many other topics.
“Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in Uganda, Social Media has grown to become one of the major communication tools driving conversations about government policies, current affairs, activism, and interpersonal communication. This was evidenced in January 2021 where the different platforms were major tools used for mobilization and campaigning in the General elections since they happened at a time when crowds couldn’t gather physically due to the pandemic.” KAS said in a statement to the press.
Mr. Opolot welcomed Ugandans to embrace the conference saying lots of issues affecting them today on the internet and on social media will be discussed in the conference, by experts.
“A lot of social media users are concerned about how organizations use their personal data, for instance. Other people have battled mental health in this pandemic and it’s been a huge challenge for governments and societies. We will be discussing how people can strike a balance and have healthy discussions online.” He said.
Dr. William Tayeebwa, a Senior Researcher and Lecturer at Makerere University’s Department of Journalism and Communications will deliver the keynote speech at the conference. He will address New Voices and Digital Media and what they mean for e-democracy online, digital politics and how governments, individuals can be harnessing open areas for free exchange of ideas.
Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) Uganda and South Sudan is a German Political foundation. It was founded after Konrad Adenauer who was a German statesman that served as the first Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany from 1949 to 1963.
The foundation partners and works with government, Civil Society Organizations and special interest groups – youths and women to advance best practices in politics and in governance for better societies.