Following The Chronicles report about social media being blocked on University of Rwanda campuses, the university administration has given official explanation for the situation.
Dr Charles Murigande, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor in charge of Institutional Advancement has responded with the following response. He explains why YouTube is blocked, but not other social media like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Dr Murigande also does not explain the concern by students who say there is no internet at all, especially the Huye campus.
Below is his explanation:
It is quite often difficult to explain a complicated issue with one tweet. Let me provide further explanations.
What has happened over the last 2 or three years is that most students have positivo computers and smart phones and are able to consume internet more than ever before. The demand for internet bandwidth has skyrocketted, especially with the great appetite to watch both recreational and educational youtube videos and movies. It is hasn’t been possible for the University of Rwanda to buy unlimited internet bandwidth so as to satisfy the students’ ever increasing internet consumption. What UR’s ICT staff have been doing was to prioritize availability of internet for academic and administration purposes during the day by blocking YouTube access. It isn’t that there is any censure but prioritization of the most essential mission of UR. Nevertheless, UR recognizes that there are excellent educational materials on YouTube that our students and staff need to access. That is why it working with institutions such as UBUNTUNET which offers cheap internet bandwidth to educational and research institutions in Africa so as to also benefit such arrangements and be able to better serve our students and staff in terms of internet access.