Ugandan police today detained the main opposition presidential candidate Kizza Besigye in the capital Kampala after a largely peaceful election held a day earlier.
Badru Kiggundu, chairperson of the IEC, said out of 36.58 percent of the total votes so far tallied, Museveni has 62.3 percent lead followed by his closest rival Kizza Besigye, who has 33.46 percent.
Turinawe said Besigye’s party is running its own tally centre and has discovered some of the results being announced by the election commission are a “concoction”.
Voting is still taking place in a handful of places where the late arrival of election materials meant that polling stations did not open on Thursday.
Meanwhile, the vote counting has commenced with results expected as soon as Saturday. Police said the house was a security facility and accused Besigye of trespassing on government property.
The head of the Uganda’s Communications Commission said the social media sites were blocked for security reasons.
In Kampala, the spokesman for Besigye’s Forum for Democratic Change said the delays were a “deliberate attempt to frustrate” voters in urban areas where Besigye is believed to be very popular, especially Kampala and the neighboring district of Wakiso. But using virtual private networks, or VPNs, many Ugandans are slowly getting back on social media.
As a result, Uganda’s electoral commission extended voting Thursday and allowed it to continue Friday in those districts.
President Yoweri Museveni is widely predicted to win a fifth term at the presidential and parliamentary elections.
VOA’s Swahili Service reports that Besigye was released later Thursday and taken to his home in Kasangati, north of Kampala.
Museveni, 71, took power in 1986 and pulled Uganda out of years of chaos. He is a key US ally on security matters, especially in Somalia.
Besigye was Museveni’s personal physician during a bush war and served as deputy interior minister in Museveni’s first Cabinet.
Besigye is one of seven candidates challenging President Yoweri Museveni, who’s ruled Africa’s biggest coffee exporter for three decades. “But where it is not a free and fair election then we must fight for free and fair elections because that is the essence of our citizenship”.