It is 24 hours to the Presidential election in Uganda and tension continues to boil as worries over electoral violence and intimidation of opposition candidates continue to spread ahead of the poll.
Long serving President Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhaburwa Museveni, candidate of the National Resistance Movement, NRM, is up against main opponent, Robert Kyagulanyi, better known as Bobbi Wine, candidate of the National Unity Party, NUP.
President Kaguta Museveni, born September 15, 1944 has been ruling Uganda since 1986 after been involved in rebellions that toppled Uganda leaders, Idi Amin and Milton Obote before he captured power.
His main opponent, a former singer turned politician, Bobbi Wine has gained massive support mainly from the youths as he seeks to end the 34 years of his presidency. He has been a target of police oppression and arrested on several occasions.
Fear and anxiety over electoral violence continue to spread. Dozens of civilians were reportedly dead and hundreds injured after the clampdown on opposition campaign rallies and political gatherings in November.
In response, Ugandan government cited measures brought in to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic for their efforts to break up political gatherings but right group countered the statement, saying it was a pretext to harass opposition parties.
Ahead of the election, the Cable News Network (CNN) hosted President Museveni in an interview where he was asked questions concerning the election and his next course of action should he lose the election.
British-Iranian journalist and CNN anchor, Christiane Amanpour asked Museveni, “If you should lose a fair election, will you accept the result?”
“If I lost a fair election, I would accept the results, of course, because Ugandan is not my house. I have got my own house. I’ll go to my house and do my own thing if the view of Ugandan don’t want me to help them with their issues. I go and deal with my personal issues very happily”, President Museveni answered.
Meanwhile, some Ugandans have expressed doubts that he will concede should he lose. They cited the clampdown on opposition party and deployment of soldiers to the streets as reasons he wouldn’t ensure free and fair election.
According to Reuters, some Ugandans have disclosed they can’t access their Facebook and WhatsApp accounts, leading to report that Ugandan government has shut down social media ahead of the election.