Museveni declared winner in Uganda polls as US says it was ‘fundamentally flawed’

President Yoweri Museveni and NUP leader Robert Kyangulanyi aka Bobi Wine/ COURTESY

President Yoweri Museveni was on Saturday declared winner of the January 14 presidential election, even as opposition figure Bobi Wine contested the result.

The electoral commission said Museveni of the National Resistance Movement garnered 5,300,831 million votes or 58.83 per cent of the votes cast, while Bobi Wine, real name Robert Kyangulanyi of National Unity Platform got 3,119,965 votes or 34.62 per cent.

Patrick Amuriat of Forum for Democratic Change only managed 296,645 votes, 3.29 per cent.

Museveni, who has ruled the country for 35 years will now push his tenure to 40 years, if he survives until 2026.

On Friday, Bobi Wine claimed victory in the election, rejecting as a “complete sham” early results that gave President Museveni the lead.

He said he felt under threat as soldiers surrounded his home on Friday evening following his claims of fraud to the press.

“They jumped over my fence. They came inside my compound. They are here right now. I don’t know why they’re here. But I’m imagining they are here to harm me. I feel threatened,” the 38-year-old musician said.

This is even as the US said it was troubled by electoral fraud reports, Ugandan authorities’ denial of accreditation to election observers, violence and harassment of opposition figures, and the arrest of CSO members.

Uganda’s social media shutdown undermines human rights, fundamental freedoms, US says

“Coupled with authorities’ denial of accreditation to observers, Uganda’s electoral process has been fundamentally flawed.  We warn against actions against opposition candidates or their supporters, those responsible will be held accountable,” Tibor Nagy, Assistant Secretary for US Department of State’s Bureau of African Affairs, said on Twitter on Saturday.

Nagy called for immediate and full restoration of Internet connectivity is essential, noting that the “US response hinges on what the Ugandan government does now”.

The European Union, however, said it was impressed with the polls.

Uganda’s Daily Monitor on Friday reported that  EU head of delegation in the country Ambassador Atillio Pacifici said they were impressed with “the level of organisation and peaceful conduct exhibited during the presidential and parliamentary polls”.

“We saw an extremely well-organised election exercise with people very orderly waiting to cast their votes and everything went on very peacefully. We are very impressed…the (Electoral Commission) presiding officers were very professional,” Daily Monitor quoted Ambassador Pacifici as having said.

This is despite EU High Representative Josep Borrell earlier saying the excessive use of force by law enforcement and security agencies had seriously tarnished Uganda’s electoral process.

Borrell in a statement said the EU and other partners had noted the pre-electoral cycle was marred by violence and difficulties faced by several opposition presidential candidates, civil society organisations, human rights defenders, electoral experts and journalists.

EU’s offer to deploy a small team of electoral experts was not taken up.

There have been brutal state violence and intimidation in which at least 50 people were killed by the police during the re-election period.

This forced Bobi Wine to campaign in a bulletproof jacket and a helmet fearing he would be shot at.

This campaign team was shot at, teargassed and most of them arrested days to the General Election.

Internet was also shutdown ahead of Election Day.

Excessive use of force by security agencies has tarnished Uganda’s election – EU

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