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Calls grow for international sanctions against state repression as evidence of vote-rigging emerges
After two weeks of house arrest, the military siege around opposition leader Bobi Wine's home has been gradually lifted and he responded by filing a challenge on 1 February at the Supreme Court to the election results giving President Yoweri Museveni 59% of the votes in the 14 January elections.
The Court is due to rule on the matter by 6 February. It has dismissed challenges to the results of the last four elections with a formulaic assessment: evidence of malpractice may be correct it isn't enough to have changed the national result.
This time, Wine and his National Unity Platform party have accumulated copious video and audio recording which they say proves systematic voter fraud across the country. Many of their claims are borne out by local independent electoral observer missions.
Wine has met United States Ambassador to Uganda Natalie Brown and British High Commissioner, Kate Airey, for talks about the elections and political conditions (AC Vol 62 No 2, Iron fist carries the day).
Angered by the denial of accreditation for most of their election observers and the blocking of a meeting between the US ambassador and Wine, officials in Washington are said to be mulling sanctions, visa bans, aid cuts and other coordinated actions against officials in Museveni's government.
Having faced a police and military onslaught during the election campaign, including over 50 deaths after over 50 people were killed in clashes in the capital, Wine and his party will have to choose their next move carefully if, as expected, the Supreme Court rejects their challenge (AC Vol 61 No 24, Museveni falls back on force).
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