Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni is claiming victory following Thursday’s election — but opposition leader Bobi Wine has dismissed his claims as a “joke.”
“I am very confident that we defeated the dictator by far. I call upon all Ugandans to reject the blackmail. We have certainly won the election and we’ve won it by far,” he told reporters per News 24.
“The people of Uganda voted massively for change of leadership from a dictatorship to a democratic government. But Mr. Museveni is trying to paint a picture that he is in the lead. What a joke!” said Wine, adding that the election was tainted by “illegal, high handed actions which Museveni and his regime of blood have undertaken to set stage for the worst rigging this country has even witnessed.”
Reuters reports that 29.4% of votes from Thursday’s ballot have been counted. Of those votes, Museveni secured 1,852,263 votes, or 63.9%, while Wine had 821,874 (28.4%), the electoral commission said just after 11 a.m.
Despite Wine’s claims, Electoral Commission Chairman Simon Byabakama says it is for Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, to prove his claims are valid. “The onus is upon candidate Kyagulanyi to show or to prove in what context and how the results are rigged,” he said.
The Ugandan government ordered a social media ban in the days running up to Thursday’s election. A total internet shutdown was decreed on Thursday, crippling communications during one of the tensest elections in recent years.
Results are expected to be announced by Saturday. A candidate must win more than 50% of the votes to avoid a runoff vote.
Friday morning, Wine tweeted that he was under siege from the Ugandan military.