- East Africa
- Politics - Election
Ugandans at polls to elect President and MPs amid delays
Thousands of Ugandans were at polling centres as early as 6.00 am ready to cast their votes in the presidential and parliamentary elections taking place today.
They were however disappointed when elections materials delayed to reach polling centres on time, and voting started between 8.00 am and 8.30am instead of the official time of 7.00 am.
The delay led to protests at some polling centres with police being called in to stop irate voters from attacking elections officials.
Uganda elections commission official, David Mpala attributed the delay to the very many polling centres and their efforts to make elections rig-proof.
"We have 22,000 polling centres throughout the country and taking there materials in time, with the limited resources we have is impossible. But i am happy to note that at last all polling centre are now active," Mpala said.
14,000,000 Ugandans are registered as voters and are expected to use their voting power to decide who will be the next Ugandan president.
Incumbent Yoweri Museveni has been in power for the last 25 years and is standing against 7 other candidates.
In 2001 Museveni won 69% of the votes with Dr. Besigye, his main challenger getting only 28%. In 2006, Museveni got 59% whilst Dr. Besigye got 37%.
However, despite the incumbent’s diminishing margins, recent polls have put Museveni ahead of his opponents by over 60 per cent. And many analysts say the president will win in the first round.
In order to be declared winner and avoid a runoff, according to Uganda’s constitution, a candidate needs a minimum of 51 per cent.