Senior Ugandan officials including the Ambassador to United Nations, Adonia Ayebare, have blasted Human Rights Watch boss Ken Roth for meddling in Uganda’s internal affairs.
It all started on December 27 with Roth Tweeting that, “Conveniently citing the coronavirus, the Ugandan government suspends campaigning for January elections in the capital and 10 populous districts where, just coincidently, of course, President Museveni’s main opponent, @HEBobiWine, is highly popular.”
The Electoral Commission (EC) on Saturday suspended elections in areas which the Health Ministry considers COVID-19 hotspots.
Roth’s remarks attracted criticism from Ugandan officials who maintain foreign entities are hellbent on destabilizing the East African country.
“Please stay out of Uganda electoral process and COVID UGANDA response, we don’t need your cynicism,” said Amb Ayebare.
“Failing Human Rights Watch (HRW) is a haven of political activists bent on undermining and patronizing African democracies,” he added.
“Our elections is our business and we will be fine.”
Presidential press secretary, Don Wanyama also blasted Roth, saying, “the question of who’s popular where will be made known by Ugandans on January 14th not some deluded neo-colonial agent sitting in a Western metropolis. Respect our sovereignty.”
Uganda is set for general elections on January 14, 2021.
The EC said it noted with concern the non-compliance by some of the candidates with the said guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures while conducting campaigns.
“Although several engagements have been made with the said candidates and/or their agents/representatives, there has been no improvement as far as compliance with the SOPs are concerned,” said EC chairperson Justice Simon Byabakama.
HRW is widely respected in western capitals but its methods of work have previously come under fire, with African governments accusing the group of being used neo-colonial agents to undermine young democracies.
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