“MUSEVENI IN EARLY LEAD” in Uganda presidential election held on February 18, the tabloid RedPepper screams “DEADLOCK” between Museveni and Besigye. Daily Monitor puts its headline simply While Uganda’s State-owned New Vision puts its headline as as “It’s Besigye vs Museveni”.
GULU-UGANDA: Although eight candidates competed for the highest office of presidency in Uganda’s polls conducted on Thursday, February 18, the preliminary result indicates that the race has been reduced to a race between incumbent Museveni and his long time rival, Dr. Kizza Besigye.
John Patrick Amama Mbabazi, Abed Bwanika, Vinancious Baryamureeba, Benon Biraaro, Joseph Mabirizi and Ms. Maureen Kyalya either got a zero percent or less than ten percent each in most polling stations across the country.
In Mbarara district which is located in Western Uganda, and is considered Museveni’s stronghold, Dr. Kizza Besigye got 94 votes against Museveni’s 127 votes from Boma Golf Course (A-L) polling station. Abed Bwanika, Ms. Maureen Kyalya and Benon Biraaro got one vote each from this particular station. Amama Mbabazi, Baryamureeba and Mabirizi each got zero vote from this polling station.
In Staff Quarter A (E, Village) polling station in Mbarara district, Kizza Besigye got 145 votes against Museveni’s 74 votes. Baryamureeba came distant third with 2 votes count. He was followed by Amama Mbabazi who got one vote. The rest got zero votes each.
At Tol-Manuwang market 1 (A-A) polling station in Gulu district in northern Uganda, Besigye got 195 votes against Museveni’s 57 votes. Amama Mbabazi came distant third with 15 vote counts, Baryamureeba came fourth with 5 votes, Bwanika came fifth with 4 votes came sixth with 2 votes. Both Mabirizi and Kyalya got zero vote as the two never campaigned in the north.
At Vanguard (OL-Z) polling station still in Gulu district, Besigye got 178 votes, Museveni got 55 votes, Mbabazi 20 votes, Baryamureeba 2 votes, Bwanika got 1 vote, Kyalya 1 vote Biraaro and Mabirizi got 0 vote each. In parliamentary race in Northern Uganda, opposition will carry the day with more opposition MPs in the tenth Parliament than National Resistance Movement-Organization (NRM-O) party. Former Leader of Opposition in the 8th Parliament, Prof. Morris Ogenga-Latigo has bounced back in parliament representing Agago North.
In Central region, Museveni took some constituencies while Besigye took others, making it very difficult to predict who of the two giants will be sworn in as president. At Industrial Area (N-Z) polling station, Museveni defeated Besigye by getting 131 votes to Besigye’s 48 votes. Bwanika came third with 14 votes counted in his favor. Kyalya got 2 votes, Mbabazi and Baryamureeba got 1 vote each while Biraaro and Mabirizi got 0 vote each.
In Luwero district in Central region, the birth place of NRM-O party, people voted against Museveni at Wobulenzi Taxi Park polling station. Here, Besigye got 176 votes against Museveni’s 110 votes counted in his favor. Here Bwanika got 7 votes, Kyalya got 5 votes, Mbabazi got 4 votes Baryamureeba and Mabirizi got 2 votes each and Biraaro got 1 vote.
The results are no different for Eastern Region where incumbent Museveni is leading in some polling stations while Besigye is leading in others. In Busia district at Solo A (M-Nam) TRS headquarter polling station, Besigye got 245 votes counted in his favor while Museveni had 226 votes. Bwanika came distant third with only 3 votes. Mbabazi, Biraaro and Kyalya got 1 vote each. Baryamureeba and Mabirizi did not get ang vote from this polling station,
In Allibira (A-L) Borhale, a polling station in Jinja in Eastern Uganda, Besigye got 344 votes while Museveni got 141 votes. The person in third position, Kyalya, got 5 votes only. She was followed by Mbabazi (4 votes) and Bwanika (2 votes). The last three candidates, Baryamureeba, Biraaro and Mabirizi did not get any vote from this polling station.
The Uganda Constitution stipulates that one must get at least above fifty percent (a clear win) so as to avoid a re-run. With this kind of result, a re-run between Museveni and Besigye cannot be ruled out.
In a related development, some senior Cabinet Ministers lost to new and younger members of parliament. The list includes Gen. Kahinda Otafire (minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs), Maj. Gen. Jim Muwhezi (minister of Information and National Guidance), Ms. Jessica Alupo (Education, Science and Sports), Ms. Irene Muloni (Minister of Energy and Mineral Development) and Ms. Rose Akol (minister of Internal Affairs).