The Uganda Gazette is an Official Government publication that contains Notices, Government declarations and supplements, Bills, Statutes, Statutory Instruments and Legal Notices. It is a weekly publication that is open and accessible to the general public.
Article 257 of the Uganda Constitution defines the Gazette as the Uganda Gazette and includes any Supplement of that Gazette. Section 2(ff) of the Interpretation Act Cap. 3 define a Gazette as the Uganda Gazette including any supplement or Gazette Extra Ordinary.
The legal status of the Uganda Gazette is that it is the Official Government publication in which all important Government Communications to the public are usually effected by being published in the Gazette. For example, Acts of Parliament are required by Article 91(8) of the Constitution to be published in the Gazette.
The Main target Audience
- Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies
- Law firms/ Advocates
- Professional Bodies/ Associations
- Private organizations and NGOs
- The International community
- The General Public
- The Media fraternity
The annual subscription fee for the Gazette is UGX. 1,400,000/= (Uganda Shillings One Million, Four Hundred Thousand Shillings Only). This fee entitles one to receive a weekly copy of the Uganda Gazette and all supplements published therein.
- If one subscribes to the Uganda Gazette, they gain access to the weekly Gazettes and any supplements published therein which include: Bills, Legal Notices, Acts/Legislation and other Government Bulletins.
- The Gazette is an official and authentic legal public information to the extent that if anything is published in the Gazette, it can be taken that the public is duly informed about the matter contained in therein.
- Provides an update on the new and revised laws of Uganda passed by parliament on a weekly basis.
- Provides opportunities for Business investment through the various notices from the Uganda Registration Services Bureau, Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, professional bodies such as Law Council, Surveyor’s Board, Nurses and Midwives Council, Ordinances and bye-laws from the Local Government and other entities.
- Free delivery at your door step.
- Long shelf life in terms of record keeping.
The Uganda Gazette is published by the Uganda Printing and Publishing Corporation (UPPC), which is established under Section 2 of the Uganda Printing and Publishing Corporation Act Cap. 330.
Section 2 of Cap. 330 establishes the Corporation as a body corporate with perpetual succession. The functions of the Uganda Printing and Publishing Corporation are prescribed by Section 5.
The main function of the Corporation is to provide printing and publishing services to the Government, Ministries, Department, parastatal bodies and to private individuals and organizations. This is provided for in Section 5 (1)
Under Section 5 (2) the Minister may after approval by Cabinet by statutory instrument direct any ministry or department to have its printing and publishing work done by the corporation.
Additionally, the detailed functions of the corporation are specified in section 5 (3) which reads as follows:-
“(3) without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), the corporation may do the following:-
- Print and publish all Government legislation and documents;
- Act as an in-service school to train its own and other organizations apprentice printers;
- Act as the chief adviser to the Government on all printing and publishing matters;
- Provide printing services to parastatals, private organizations and individuals;
- Provide stationary, such as envelops, desk calendars, letter heads, visiting cards, file folders or other stationery for office use;
- Produce poster and other forms of advertising materials;
- Produce paper bags, paper boxes and other paper packing containers;
- Provide technical drawings and architectural plans;
- Publish books, booklets or other publications which enhance the culture, welfare and unity of Uganda;
- Print both textbooks and exercise books or any other books for general reading or use
- Carry out binding services on books, magazines or other documents;
- Provide business and accounting stationery, such as receipt forms, cash books and ledger books;
- Undertake security printing works as may be determined by the Minister in consultation with the board;
- Carry out any other activity that may be carried out by a printing and publishing institution.”
Where anything is published in the Gazette it can be taken that the public is duly informed about the matter contained in the Gazette. In more recent times, in cases where the Government desires to ensure that by all means the public are duly informed, certain laws provide that in addition to Gazette publication the matter concerned be published in the media. Some of these are the following-
The other aspect is that if there is a requirement for Gazette publication under any enactment and the requirement is not complied with, it means the action under the requirement is not fully performed and it will therefore not have the intended legal effect, for example, if an Act is not published in the Gazette as required by article 91 (8) of the Constitution , the Act cannot be enforced as law.
The History of the Uganda Gazette can be traced back to the time of the missionaries in the 1880s. When they arrived in Uganda, the missionaries set up churches and schools. This exposed some Ugandans to the culture of reading and writing.
After the missionaries, the British colonialists came into Uganda and they also introduced their own education system. All these were exposing Ugandans to new ideas. When the Second World War erupted, the British mobilized a number of Ugandans and took them to fight on their side in Europe.
By the end of the war these Ugandans had been exposed to so many ideologies and when they came back with these revolutionary ideas they started publishing newspapers like “Gambuzze”, “Munyonyozzi” and “Tula Nkunyonyole.” Through these newspapers, revolutionary messages against the British colonialist were disseminated to the public.
In 1945 when country-wide riots against the British rule erupted, the British blamed the newspapers for fueling the riots and these papers were banned.
As a result, the British set up their own Newspaper called the “Uganda Gazette.” All this took place during the 1950s.
Other Newspapers were later published like the Uganda Argus. Today, there are many newspapers in Uganda e.g the New Vision, the Daily Monitor, the Observer etc.
The Uganda Gazette was retained as the official Government legal bulletin despite having other newspapers in circulation.