The Ugandan Communications Commission (UCC) has summoned musician Eric Opoka or Eezzy to respond to allegations regarding the viral song Tumbiza Sound.
Earlier this month, the Ministry of Health (MOH) wrote a letter to the Commission through its Director-General, Dr Henry Mwebesa , calling for an immediate ban on the broadcast of the song.
In a letter dated December 4, 2020, he noted that the song not only misinformed but also created a candlestick towards the COVID-19 guidelines among the public.
“Currently, the Ministry of Health is working with the UCC and the Ministry of Communication Technology and National Guidance to effectively provide health promotion and education information to the public,” an excerpt from Mwebesa’s letter read.
“Tumbiza Sound by Eric Opoka or Eezzy is a disturbing reference to the broadcast of a song on electronic and social media with messages contrary to the standard operating practices of the Ministry of Health regarding the prevention of COVID-19.”
As a result, he asked the commission to consider banning the Tumbiza sound song to detain the public with any satisfaction.
“Furthermore, I request that all educational programs with health information/messages in COVID-19 sent to various media outlets be coordinated with the Ministry of Health before they are aired,” translated into English for the UCC note and action.
However, in the aftermath of the incident, the commission summoned the musician to respond to allegations related to his song.
According to a report released by Irene Kaggwa-Sewankambo , Ag. Executive Director, the musician is required to report to the commission on Tuesday with only a maximum of three delegates.
“Tumbiza Sound complaint is that the song contains inconsistent messages to the Ministry of Health Standards Operating Procedures (SOP) related to the prevention of COVID-19,” a statement from the commission said.
What is the song all about?
If you listen to the lyrics very carefully, the musician mentions controversial statements regarding the whole COVID-19 situation.
In the song, he calls on the Ministry of Health to reopen liquor stores and concerts with those willing to comply with SOPs. He also urged the ministry to isolate people in liquor stores for 14 days.
“Mwe bwemuba mu lockdown, ffe tuba mu bend down,” loosely translated to “While you are in lockdown for us we are shaking it down,” one statement from the song reads.
However, during a recent interview on local television stations, the musician noted that the public has a misconception about the song.
He said his song had no bad intentions, but he sang it to send a message to the relevant authorities that if complaints were made about guidelines aimed at mitigating the spread of the virus, places like bars and concerts could be allowed to reopen.
“My song doesn’t have a bad mind. I sang because of the situation we are in now. I raised my voice to the people. If you ask me clearly, I was asking those in the ministry to ease the lockdown. It has a message to send to those involved, but I sang it for the sake of its fans,” the musician said.