US to Museveni: Elections a sham, release Besigye immediately



The United States has released yet another statement on the results of Uganda’s presidential elections.

In a Press Statement issued by Mark C. Toner, the Deputy Department Spokesperson Washington, DC on February 20, 2016, the United States commended the Ugandan people for actively participating and peacefully in the February 18 elections.

“While the vote occurred without major unrest, we must acknowledge numerous reports of irregularities and official conduct that are deeply inconsistent with international standards and expectations for any democratic process.”

The statement cites delays in the delivery of voting materials, reports of pre-checked ballots and vote buying, ongoing blockage of social media sites, and excessive use of force by the police saying these collectively undermine the integrity of the electoral process.

“The Ugandan people deserved better.”

“We are also concerned by the continued house arrest of opposition presidential candidate Kizza Besigye. We call for his immediate release and the restoration of access to all social media sites.”

President Yoweri Museveni won with 60% followed by FDC’s Kizza Besigye with 35%.

Besigye contested the results saying the election was a sham.

He is currently under house arrest at his home in Kasangati.

Former Prime Minister, Amama Mbabazi who came third with 1% also dismissed the election results as inaccurate.

Mbabazi too is under house arrest.

“We encourage those who wish to contest the election results to do so peacefully and in accordance with Uganda’s laws and judicial process, and urge the Ugandan government to respect the rights and freedoms of its people and refrain from interference in those processes,” the US State Department said in a statement.

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