Yoweri Museveni, Uganda’s longtime President has been re-elected for a sixth term, in an election his rival has said was rigged.
Bobi Wine, a singer-turned-politician, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi has called on the country to dismiss the results after the country’s election commission declared him second.
Wine who has been campaigning to oust Museveni said his team was considering all peaceful, nonviolent and legal options to contest the results, as fears of post-election unrest surfaces, following deadly violence in the months leading up to the vote.
“We are the real winners of this election and therefore what the electoral commission announced has nothing to do with the real election that took place,” Wine told CNN immediately after the announcement.
“I can call on all Ugandans to reject the announcement that has been made by the electoral commission … to reject them with the contempt with which it deserves.”
The election commission said Museveni won in a landslide, with 58.64% of the nearly 10 million ballots cast, while opposition Wine received 34.83% of the vote.
The singer-turned-politician said he had evidence of fraud and intimidation, but he did not provide details of that alleged evidence, saying his team would share it when communications lines were restored. He had earlier accused the electoral commission of vote rigging.
The internet in Uganda has been shut down for days under a government order. Wine said that he was struggling to get hold of his leadership team after being placed under house arrest on Friday.
Before the election, Wine has garnered support from all over Africa as celebrities rallies around him. Even on social media, Wine and his team created a hashtag #WeAreRemovingADictator.
Museveni, 76, has been in power for more than three decades and, ahead of this vote, outside observers believed there was little chance he would relinquish his position.
Ugandans voted in the poll on Thursday amid the internet shutdown. In a speech Tuesday, Museveni confirmed his government had ordered internet providers block Facebook and other social media, accusing the platforms of “arrogance.” By morning of election day, the order was extended.
The internet blackout has raised questions around the integrity of the vote count and also meant biometric machines failed to register ballots, forcing many polling stations to use manual voting and checks.
There were reports of late delivery of voting material and insufficient material at numerous polling locations.
According to CNN, Journalists traveling to Wine’s residence for a press conference were turned back by security forces before reaching his home. Many were also forced to leave the national election tally center, despite having accreditation.