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Ugandans go to the polls as Bobi Wine seeks to end Museveni’s 34-year rule

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In Summary
  • There are 11 presidential candidates.
  • Museveni is seeking his sixth term in office.

Ugandans go to the polls today in one of the most keenly-watched elections.

Polls open at 07:00 local time.

Pop star politician Bobi Wine (Robert Kyagulanyi) is seeking to unseat incumbent Yoweri Museveni who has been in power since 1986.

There are 11 presidential candidates in total. But only Bobi Wine, who says he represents the country’s younger generation, poses a serious challenge to Museveni. At 76, Museveni believes he is the face of stability.

“Many observers see the challenge to Museveni as emblematic of a continent-wide generational struggle between ageing leaders who refuse to relinquish power and younger voters mobilising against them,” notes UK newspaper The Guardian.

The campaign period was marred by serious violence, which saw dozens of people killed. The government has also ordered a block on all social media, and the internet in general. President Museveni was responding to Facebook’s ban on several accounts which were backing his ruling party.

ALSO:  Uganda's Bobi Wine released on bail after court appearance

Yesterday, the US and EU said they would not observe the elections, after several officials were denied accreditation.

According to The Guardian,  Museveni enjoys widespread support, particularly among more conservative, rural and older voters who credit him with economic and healthcare gains and rural development.

Results are not expected before Saturday. The winning candidate needs 50 percent plus one to avoid a run off. A total of 529 parliemantary seats are also up for grabs.

-Additional information from the BBC

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