UGANDA ELECTIONS: Opposition calls for peaceful protests

People protest in Kampala on the eve of the February 18 election. Opposition leaders have vowed to spearhead peaceful protests against President Museveni’s government whose re-election for a fourth term they contest. PHOTO BY YUSUF MUZIRANSA

At a media conference which began at noon today, opposition leaders Norbert Mao (DP), Dr Kizza Besigye (FDC/IPC) and Olara Otunnu (UPC) have announced that they have decided to lead a popular uprising with peaceful protests against Mr Yoweri Museveni’s government whose re-election for a fourth term they contest.

Between Friday last week and today, the leaders including Mr Samuel Lubega who ran as an independent, have denounced the election as having been a sham fraught with voter bribery, outright and widespread vote rigging and intimidation by the security services including the army.

Along with two other candidates, Beti Kamya of the Uganda Federal Alliance and Jaberi Bidandi Ssali of the People’s Progressive Party, they have refused to recognise what they describe as Mr Museveni’s  illegitimate government.

In the weeks leading up to the February 18 election, Mr Museveni promised to crush any political protests against the outcome of a now disputed election. As the country goes through the election cycle with local government polls currently underway, a heavy and suffocating military presence can be felt across Uganda’s urban centres with motorised and foot patrols of police and soldiers very visible.


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