Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has scored a decisive election victory to win a sixth straight term, according to the country’s election commission.
But reacting to the results, the leading opposition candidate, Bobi Wine, denounced them as fraudulent and urged citizens to reject them.
The Electoral Commission said final counts showed Mr. Museveni, seventy-six, won 5.85 million votes, or 58.6%, while Mr. Wine had 3.48 million votes.
Mr. Museveni has been in power since 1986, when his National Resistance guerrilla movement seized the capital, Kampala, after dislodging the military government of Tito Orkelo.
Dismissing the allegations of fraud, Mr. Museveni told Ugandans on Saturday evening that the just-concluded election may turn out to be the “most cheating free” in the country’s history.
The campaign was marked by a deadly crackdown by security forces on Mr. Wine, other opposition candidates and their supporters.
Mr. Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, called the results of Thursday’s ballot a “complete fraud”.
The thirty-eight-year-old singer-turned-politician who had rallied young Ugandans behind his call for political change, insisted that President Museveni had used the institutions of state power to manipulate the vote.
“It’s an election that was taken over by the military and the police,” he said in a phone interview from inside his home in the capital, which was surrounded by soldiers who he said had forbidden him from leaving.
In the run-up to Thursday’s vote, local civil society groups and foreign governments had questioned its credibility and transparency, after scores of requests for accreditation to monitor the election were denied.
The US and an African election monitoring group complained of election irregularities.
The UK said it was concerned by a national internet shutdown that began the day before the vote. It said the shutdown constrained freedoms and “clearly limited the
“transparency of the elections”.