Various reactions to the Uganda Elections around the world; worth taking a look at!

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If you think the Election Observer Monitoring teams had different views on the General Elections and Presidential Elections in Uganda. I have already dropped a few of the State Officials and Presidents who has congratulated President Museveni on his 5th Term. I will not repeat those as I put them on as to prove who is the friend of the man who is now unofficial president for the 7th term; first Russian,  Engel (House Member of Committee of Foreign Affairs, U.S.A.), President Kiir of South Sudan and Ivan Ssemwanga.

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Elliot Engel Statement:

“Since the people of Uganda went to the polls yesterday, I have been deeply concerned by the government’s decision to block social media sites and by reports of pre-marked ballots and inflated tallies in some of the voting stations. These are affronts to a free and fair electoral process. I am likewise dismayed by reports that presidential candidate Kizza Besigye was arrested and that the home of another candidate, former Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi, was surrounded by security forces. I call upon both incumbent President Yoweri”.

Russian Foreign Ministry has said:

Moscow hails the successful general elections in the friendly Uganda, which have proved broad national support for the government’s course towards stable political and socio-economic development” (…)”noted a generally open and peaceful nature of the election campaign and the voting process and observed no serious violations that could affect the results of the popular vote” (RBTH, 2016).

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President Salva Kiir sends message to President Museveni on WhatsApp:

““Congratulations Big brother…..I’ll always take your advice seriously….You are a man of experience” (…)”Are you still in Mbarara (cattle camp)?” (Osobi, 2016).

Celebrating the Victory of Museveni in South Africa:

“South Africa based Ugandan socialite Ivan Ssemwanga was the happiest when Museveni won the Presidential elections and started partying straight away. The Rich Gang boss shared with us a photo while drowning in booze in celebration of President Museveni’s victory” (Bigeye, 2016).

I think this here shows the difference reactions to it… As the American Official condemn the actions of Government, while the Russian friends of Uganda says it is a “Successful election” in their view so they have read the IGAD/EAC/COMESA statements and swallowed it whole as it fits the view of Moscow, Russia. While the friendship between South Sudan and Ugandan Presidents as they have helped each other now and then. Then you have a Ugandan in diaspora who is celebrating. That is enough for now. Peace.

Dr. Kizza Besigye statement on the conduct of the 2016 presidential elections (Youtube-Clip)

Dr. Kizza Besigye’s  message from House Arrest in Kasangati in Wakiso on the outskirts of Kampala. Listen to it! As we mourn the results and the way the Electoral Commission has taken the power of the People and given way to the President Museveni yet again. This message from the People’s President is deep and strong. A worthy message from a great man! Peace.

Interim Statement of the Commonwealth Observer Group: On the Ugandan General Election 2016 (20.02.2016)

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Press Release: Uganda -Blanket ban on social media on election day is disproportionate (18.02.2016)

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ARTICLE 19 is deeply concerned by the decision by the Uganda Communications Commission to block access to social media while millions of Ugandans head to the polls on election day.

This morning, the Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) blocked social media sites. UCC’s Director of Corporate Affairs, Fred Otunnu cited “national security” and that the platforms were being “used to campaign on voting day”. He added that Uganda Electoral Commission had complained about alleged online campaigns that were continuing after 16 February, when all election campaigning was required to cease.

Henry Maina, Regional Director of ARTICLE 19 Eastern Africa explained that “this ban on social media platforms is part of a number pervasive systemic measures by the government of Uganda to limit freedom of expression and access to information during the election period. Blanket bans on social media cannot be justified under international law and are wholly disproportionate.”

“At a time when the world’s gaze is on Uganda and the Presidential elections, we call on the Ugandan authorities to immediately revoke the blocking of social media and allow Ugandans to exercise their right to freedom of expression, as well as their right to participate in a free and open election process,” added Maina

Second report as the first polls close in Uganda; with more tear gas; some demonstrations and other poll stations postponed; Dr. Kizza Besigye arrested yet AGAIN and more!

Kampala 18.02.2016

As the day has gone and some first results is coming. I will not comment on them now, as they are not as interesting as the reactions and violations of democratic values and vile display of disgrace of the public will from the authorities and the ruling party in Uganda.

As the Uganda Communication Commission together with Electoral Commission banned Twitter, WhatsApp and Facebook, even mobile-money transfers services. As this could give biased news and dangerous bribing of voters, as the voters has not been bribed during the pre-election period at all. Well, the public found other ways of finding the social media and avoid the issue with Uganda Telecom (UTL/Mango), MTN and Airtel. As they download different VPN services on their phone and still got in to the social media outlets. The actual numbers of downloads this day was staggering 1,432,653. By my reckoning also the apparent ghost that will also in total vote in the election when the tally is done.

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At one point of the day the Special Forces Command took control of Nakasero Referal Hospital as it had a technical and importance for the authorities as the Presidential guards needed to secure the premises.

In Gaba a suburb of Kampala the public first waited for hours. This happen:

“In Gaba at St Dennis church a full box was brought with ballot papers already ticked in favor of the incumbent who triggered a riot by locals. Military, Police and black mamba security in tinted cars without number-plate were seen patrolling the place. Voting has ended”. As well as the actions contained this as well: “The voters set fire on all the ballots boxes brought”.

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Even early in the day there we’re little or no voting material in vast amounts of polling stations in Wakiso District and Kampala Capital City as the Electoral Commission hadn’t delivered the ballots-papers to the stations. As people came early as the voting starting 07.00 and was to end with the new time 16.00 but with the late arrival nearly at 13.00 or 14.00 even as late as 14.54 that gave the long waiting ques simmering anger at the incompetence or deliberate plunder of time of the people in the area. Even the with the UCC and Telecom bans the Electoral Commission wanted people on Social Media around 14.00 to tell that the Polling stations in the affected areas would be officially open to 19.00 as the people should be able to do their civic duty.

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In Kajanisi, Kampala a Police Officer was arrested and taken away as he held over 600 ballots-papers pre-ticket for the NRM and President Museveni.  Radio One report that Kajjansi B health center polling station in Kampala closed after 3 boxes with pre-ticked ballots in favor of President Museveni and Peter Sematimba were found in a car. Live Bullets in Namuwongo Taking Place. Police and Military Have Intimidated Voters hence forcing them NOT to cast their votes, remember, voting had just begun late at 2:03pm

As of Makindye:

“9:18PM Voting at 22 polling stations in Makindye affected by late delivery of voting materials postponed till tomorrow: Electoral Commission” (NBS TV, 18.02.2016).

In Fort Portal:

“At public library polling station in south division, Fort Portal, 450 ballot papers were received yet the number of registered voters is 429, an excess of 21 ballots. And yet Nyakagongo parish Headquarters in East division received less ballot papers than the number of registered voters. They received 10 booklets some containing 46 ballots, some 50 and others 49 instead of all containing 50 each booklet. There was a total of 500 ballot papers. They have 471 registered voters. They started voting at 7:15am Report: Scovia Atuhaire & Felix Basiime (Daily Monitor, 18.02.2016).

In Masaka:

“Polling agents in Kizungu, Masaka Sports Club have confirmed to Kampala FM that they were not given basins where voters will tick from. This has therefore delayed the voting process since they (agents) too can not afford buying basins” (Kampala FM, 18.02.2016).

More about elections in Masaka:

“‎Unindentified people have been with fifty Museveni pre-ticked ballot papers at Kaboyo Primary school polling station in Lwengo. The voters who were present at the polling station did not allow police to take the culprits and instead resorted to caining them. They were later on told to go back home and the pre ticked ballots were burnt”.

Kaabong 18.02.2016

In Karamoja:

“Karamojong tribeswoman casts her ballot at a polling station during the presidential elections in Kaabong in Karamoja region”.

Koboko 18.02.2016 Evelyn Anite Voting

In Koboko:

“NRM’s Evelyn Anite slips her ballot paper into the ballot box in Koboko Municipality in northern Uganda”.

Early in Apac Town today:

“Voting in Apac town area commenced by 07.10 am. Most polling stations have not had chaos yet, as they voted, Police are all round in Polling stations. Most of the busiest business centers are closed. The number of people in town has also gone down and a few petty businesses are going on” (Rupiny Newspaper, 18.02.2016).

In Arua:

“Last evening, 170 polling officials in River Oli Division in Arua district threatened to boycott work unless Electoral Commission increases their allowances. They include polling assistants and presiding officers. Geoffrey Drani, one of the affected presiding officers, told URN during their recruitment Electoral Commission promised to pay presiding officers Shillings 60,000 and 40,000 for polling assistants. He however, says they were shocked yesterday to receive appointment letters showing that they will receive Shillings 20, 000 each day. According to Drani, as a result, they have declined to sign the appointment letters until Electoral Commission increases the money”.

In Abletong:

“No incident has been registered while in Alebtong, Amolatar, Otuke and part of Lira districts by 9:00am the voting have not started despite the fact that many electorate turned up to cast to their votes.  “You cast you votes and you come back and continue with your business,” said Betty Akello shorting after voting at VH primary school polling station. Patrick Okello of Omoro Sub County in Alebtong said at Onyeroiye polling station business is going on well and the turned up was overwhelming. “We think the turned up will be 80% because people are voting seriously,” he said” (Rupiny Newspaper, 18.02.2016).

In Kween:

“Elections of the MP kween district have been postponed until further notice reason the symbols for the candidates didn’t match instead vice versa I mean interchanged for FDC was in independent and for independent in that of FDC”.

In Yumbe:

The Woman Parliamentary MP Vote for Yumbe was cancelled today! (88.7 Arua ONE FM, 18.02.2016).

Kahinda Otafiire

In Ruhinda:

If you ever thought Kahinda Otafiire would go away silent as the audio-tape of his bribing tactics as he tried to buy the seat from his opponent that beat him in the NRM Primaries during 2015. 2016, has not been his year and continues as he has been jailed today as he has been distributing bribes of UGX 20k to voters in Mitooma (theInsider.ug, 18.02.2016). Doesn’t seem that the UCC bribe act with stopping mobile-money service stopped Otafiire from acting up! (I was not supposed to write that or think that, my bad!).

In Kiruhura:

“The shame of Kiruhura, after yesterday all night harassment, detention and forceful eviction of opposition supporters in Kiruhura. Today what we are witnessing is, because of fear instilled on our supporters by the security and armed militias last night, they have stayed away from the polling stations”.

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In Tororo:

“Police was forced to fire teargas to disperse hundreds of Apollo Yeri Ofwono’s supporters who had threatened to set a blaze the home of the prime minister of Iteso cultural union Paul Sande Emolot in Tororo municipality. Ofwono’s supporters raided Emolot’s home on suspicion that it was used to bribe residents to vote for the incumbent Member of Parliament Sanjay Tanna” (New Vision, 18.02.2016).

FDC 18.02.2016 Besigye Arrested

Later in the day Dr. Kizza Besigye arrested:

“Besigye was arrested when he joined his supporters and they stormed a house in Naguru, a Kampala upscale suburb arguing that there is alleged vote rigging taking place”. Kizza Besigye have after the arrest by the Police in Naguru, been taken to Kasangati Police Station. That is currently detained.

“Video footage of an FDC raid on a reported safe house in Naguru being used to allegedly tick ballot papers led by Rtd. Col. Dr. Kizza Besigye in which he was also later arrested for trespassing” (NBS TV Uganda, 18.02.2016).

Shawn Mabiru says this about the detaining of Besigye:

“He was in his home district where he voted when he got information that there was an illegal tally centre manned by the NRM and police” (…)”He walked in and saw them pre-ticking ballot papers. They arrested him and took him to an unknown place”.

UPF 18.02.2016 Press Statement Tallying

In Lira yesterday:

“Lira Magistrate Court today released on Court bail seven people who were arrested over the weekend on allegation of defacing posters belonging to NRM Presidential Candidate Yoweri Museveni. Willy Omodo Omodo the GO Forward Candidate for Oyam North MP, Ibrahim Olong who is contesting for Lira Municipality Mayor and Abura James Walter Youth Councillor for Lira Municipality. Others are Mungu Richard Jakisa the News Editor at Radio North, Otim Innocent , Tile David and Patrick Awongo (Radio Wa 89.8 FM, 17.02.2016).

In Kihihi yesterday:

There was reports that the locals “delivered” and got a 100 Rwandan nationals ferried to vote in the election the 18th had come to Kihihi district to vote for President Museveni. They all stayed in Kihihi Police Station. As they wanted them to ship them home and let Ugandans vote in their election.

In Kayunga County yesterday as the government was kind yesterday:

“Kayunga District distributed more 66 heifers worth 102 million shillings to farmers under the Luwero Rwenzori Development Programme” (17.02.2016); the Government all of sudden share their funds just the day before the election, nothing suspicious about that at all…

Tally Error:

Nakasongola:

The magic is that President Museveni has gotten over 3000 votes while the original papers from the Electoral Commission are saying the total voters are 2098!

Rushere Primary School:

The tally shows another magical result for President Museveni he got 760 votes, Kizza Besigye 2 votes. The magical part is that the School and Polling station has 437 votes!

Fear level at certain places:

As the results are pouring in and the tallies are counted. The Army is deploying heavy forces in Luwero and Nakaseke!

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Amama Mbabazi message during the elections today:

“I ask all voters in this election to keep vigilant and report any suspicious incident. I would like to thank the team from Karamoja that is vigilant and have reported the following anomalies. In Abim district, the District Registrar is withdrawing a Presidential booklet (50 ballots) from each polling station and taking to unknown destination claiming that some polling stations were in short supply/under served. We question this logic because it is not only President being voted for today but all Members of Parliament as well. There are 60 polling stations in Abim and this amounts to 3000 votes being taken away. South of Amudat in a place called Karita subcounty, our agents with polling agent letters and supervisors have been chased away by Crime Preventers who are armed. Tell us what is happening at your polling station” (Mbabazi, 18.02.2016).

There will come more in the coming days as the ministers, local council men and all the elections results will come and people will react to the new 10th Parliament and who will become the new president in Uganda, as the results hopefully get rid of President Museveni as his rigging time should be over and let the people’s will shine. Peace.

A few reports on the voting in Uganda; Deliberately late arrival of ballots in Kampala; and more!

 

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The Social networks are supposed to be down as the Electoral Commission in accord with Uganda Broadcast Commission have decided that showing the election is an dangerous activity; so it is not allowed on the polling day; and also the Money transfer services through cellphones will also be discontinued for the moment. As Airtel, MTN and Uganda Telecom have disbanded WhatsAPP, Twitter and Facebook. The people have started to use VPN and Tunnelbearer App to cross the barricades to the social to address the world of the events unfolding.

“CONFIRMED: Uganda Communications Commission (UCC): Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, mobile money services blocked due to ‘security reasons’. UCC says Facebook, Twiiter, WhatsApp, mobile money services will be unblocked ‘after assessing the security situation” (NBS TV, 18.02.2016).

Well, that is just the Social Media, the more important the ballots and Polling stations! There the democracy in action is happening. Following this; more to come!

“Mzeei Haruna Kabirizi shares his disappointment with the delay in the voting process. Agip Polling Station, Kisuggu ‪#‎UgandaDecides Video: Mabala Rachel” (Daily Monitor).

In Kampala:

The general reports is that in Kampala, Makindye and Wakiso district the voting material has not come in expected as the Electoral Commission says is systematic difficulties. While the voting has started in Gulu, but not in Nakawa or other parts of Kampala; this here must been seen as deliberate actions to get the people to wait for hours, to see if they really want to vote in the elections. No voting has started in Kawempe, the reports comes of all the different voting stations in the city. If it starts it starts hours after anticipating opening time. Instead of early morning it’s about lunch time, and with the new voting regulations the polling stations closes earlier then in previous elections!

“Presidential candidate Maurine Kyalya’s National ID details not in the voters register. The biometric system seems to only be having details contained in the voter location slips that were distributed late. Its widespread”.

In Busia:

Happening now Bumirambako In Busia polling station….Many People Are Being Denied To Vote While Their Names Appear on The Register Bse They Don’t Have National ID.

In Entebbe:

“At Kiwafu Primary School like a number of places in Entebbe Municipality, presiding officers and other polling officials didn’t turn up because of little pay. Now polling assistants who are not so versed with the exercise are in charge” (Daily Monitor, 18.02.2016). 10pm and Mpala polling station still in entebbe has no voting exercise taking place. No ballot papers.

In Rukungiri:

“There is a heavy presence of the members of the fourth estate in various polling centres in uganda. Am here at Rukungiri as a UN Observer. Besigye is about to cast his vote here at Rukungiri”.

In Kabale:

There has been mix-up of ballots and the election in town is called off apparently.

“DOKOLO SOUTH PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION CANCELLED – It was called off this morning by the returning officer Benjamin Ewal” (Urban TV, 18.02.2016).

Besigye 18.02.2016
Dr. Kizza Besigye doing his civic duty earlier today!

This here is the beginning. I will come with more as this comes. This here will be as crazy and amazing as the NRM Primaries on steroids. As Dr. Badru M. Kiggundu doesn’t have the arrogance as Dr. Tanga Odoi in the NRM EC. This here will continue to shade the darkness of the dictatorship of the NRM regime. The proof of the fear of spreading information is the UCC censorship of the Social Media today, as the ironic shut down of mobile money as he voters been bought with cash-money buy the ruling regime for several weeks now and even pictures of Ministers and even the Prime Minister giving money for votes in recent weeks. This here is more a following then an analysis or commentary. But the ironic measure has to be said! Well, continue to vote and try to vote as the material arrives at the Polling stations! The Regime is stifling the process deliberately. Continue to stay strong! Peace.