Uganda    CATHOLIC RADIO NETWORK URGED, TO COUNTER CULT BRAINWASHING
A Catholic official in Uganda has called for the creation of a Catholic radio network in order to prevent further tragedies such as the cult suicide/murder in Kanungu.
   Executive Secretary of the Social Communications Commission of the Ugandan Catholic Secretariat, Fr Anthony Matovo, told the Rome-based MISNA news agency that a radio network would assist social development, and awaken those easily brainwashed by sect leaders.
   Because the region where the tragedy occurred is very remote, and isolated from other communications media, the message that the end of the world was coming was believable for many people.
   Fr Matovo said the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments cult, protagonist of the recent fire in Kanungu which claimed the lives of hundreds of its members, is not an isolated phenomenon in Uganda.
   Though it is commonly known that 'there are fanatics throughout the world' - concluded Father Matovo - it is vital that the Ugandan Catholic Church take immediate and systematic action through radio.
   Meanwhile, the BBC reports that the cult at the centre of the tragedy spread their Ten Commandments teachings on Voice of Toro, a commercial FM station based in Fort Portal, near the border with DR Congo. It says the cult leaders broadcast the programs from December through until the week before the deaths.
   An official from the radio station told a Ugandan newspaper that all the programs were paid for, including one that was to be broadcast on 17 March.
   "We did not find any criminal material in them," station manager Perez Tinkasimire told the paper. "It was purely religious, stressing the Ten Commandments philosophy. I'm an Anglican but I liked the way these people preached."
   
MISNA & BBC
2/4/00

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