Winnie Byanyima Compares Thursday Polls to 1980’s

Winnie Byanyima and her husband Col Besigye

The Executive Director Oxfam International Mrs Winnie Byanyima sees no dissimilarity between yesterday February 18th presidential and parliamentary elections from those of 1980,  which sparked the 5 year war that ushered in the current National Resistance Movement government.

The situation only hours after the general elections continues to put to question the firm promises of post election serenity, made by the country’s security organizations and incumbent President Yoweri Museveni.

Business in Kampala remains remarkably slow, with most shops closed and a presence of heavily armed police and military men as well as fierce armored vehicles roaming the streets.

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Mrs Winnie Byanyiima, who is also wife to opposition Presidential Candidate Dr Kizza Besigye made the comparison after her husband was arrested from his party offices in the Najjanankumbi on Friday afternoon.

Besigye was by publication time still being held at Naggalama Police together with the FDC president Gen Mugisha Muntu and chief mobilizer Ingrid Turinawe.

“How different is this election from the 1980 one which was the reason Museveni gave for waging a costly 5-year civil war?,” tweeted Byanyima.

The said December 1980 elections were won by UPC’s Dr Milton Obote amidst accusations of widespread rigging by Museveni’s Uganda Patriotic Movement.

Weeks later, Museveni who had guerrilla war experience with the Mozambican Liberation Front (FRELIMO) in Mozambique organized a few dozen men and took to the bush to start the protracted civil war which they won in 1986.

Mrs Byanyima like several other opposition leaders and observers contests the credibility of yesterday’s polling exercise.

Citing the several ministers and NRM officials who lost in the polls, she questioned how Museveni could be leading with 62% in the preliminary results.

The ruling party maintains however, that while the electoral commission erred especially on delivering polling materials on time, the rest of the exercise was relatively peaceful.


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