Kampala, Uganda (PANA) – Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has won his country’s presidential elections for the fifth time with 5.6 million votes (60.75%), compared to the 3.5 million votes secured by his detained challenger Kizza Besigye, in an election marred by irregularities and violent arrest of opponents.
Electoral Commission Chairman Badru Kiggundu declared President Museveni’s victory but openly admitted the elections were “not error-free”.
The opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has rejected the final results announced at the Nambole stadium in the capital, Kampala, Saturday.
Besigye, in confinement, said his party rejected the election outcome and called for an independent audit of the results, according to his associates.
“I declare Kaguta Museveni winner,” Kiggundu announced at a news conference Saturday, flanked by commissioners of the electoral body, which was blamed for delaying the delivery of poll material to mostly opposition strongholds in the capital.
Kiggundu said although some poll results were not yet in, the 5, 617,503 votes received by Museveni were more than enough to meet the constitutional threshold of 50 plus one percent of the vote.
At least 15,277,198 Ugandan citizens registered to vote but only 9.7 million people turned out on election day, representing 63% voter turnout.
The main opposition leader was put under house arrest at his home on Friday, his third arrest during the voting period, in what the Police said was a “preventive arrest” to stop mass protests.
The main opposition party officials and poll agents boycotted the ceremony at which the results were announced.
Former Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi, who ran as an independent, managed to get 1.43% of the votes.
The social media and mobile money transfers have remained blocked since the Ugandans went to the polls to elect their leaders.