KAMPALA – The United States of America Ambassador to Uganda Natalie E. Brown has on Saturday 30, 2021 held an introductory meeting with Ugandan National Unity Platform (NUP) President Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine.
The two have discussed the political situation in Uganda, the essential role that constructive political opposition plays in a democracy, the decades-long partnership between the people of the Uganda and the United States, and the political transition in the United States.
On the eve of African American History Month, celebrated in the United States each February, they also discussed America’s continued effort to achieve the promise of liberty and justice for all, the important legacy of civil rights leaders and ordinary citizens who have dedicated their lives to advance that goal, and how these experiences have influenced others globally in the pursuit for more inclusive and representative societies.
The Ambassador commended the participation of candidates from across Uganda’s political spectrum in the country’s recent elections while noting the United States’ deep and continuing concern about the extrajudicial detention of opposition political party members, the reported disappearance of several opposition supporters, and continued restrictions on the NUP’s operations.
She reiterated that the United States does not take sides or support any specific candidate or party in Uganda’s elections.
She called for all political parties and their supporters to use constitutional, legal, and non-violent means to address complaints over election irregularities and emphasized U.S. support for the fundamental freedoms of expression, assembly, and movement. Political violence, repression, and intimidation have no place in democracies.
Recently, Ambassador Natalie was blocked by security forces from visiting Bobi Wine at his residence who was subjected to house arrest after announcing Presidential election results which his party NUP rejected.
According to the embassy, the United States regularly meets with actors across Uganda’s political spectrum as part of its diplomatic engagement.
America says that Uganda’s election campaigns were marred by the harassment of opposition candidates, campaign staff, and supporters; suppression of the media and civil society organization activities; and a nationwide internet shutdown before, during, and after voting day.
“These unlawful actions and the effective house arrest of a presidential candidate continue a worrying trend on the course of Uganda’s democracy.”
“We call on the Ugandan government to respect their citizens’ human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the freedom of expression, freedom of assembly and freedom of the press as provided for in Uganda’s own constitution and according to commitments Uganda has made to uphold international human rights standards,” U.S. added.
They warned that nobody should be unlawfully denied a means to communicate and the freedom to leave their home, should they choose to do so.
The former ragga singer turned lawmaker came second in the presidential election with 35%, and has since said the process was marred by widespread fraud and violence.
Bobi Wine was later released after court ordered security to vacate his house immediately.