KAMPALA — The US department of state has announced visa restrictions on Uganda officials involved in undermining democracy in Uganda.
In a statement the US, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said government actions during the recent electoral process undermined democracy and human rights and that they shouldn’t go unpunished.
The US said Ugandan officials involved in human rights abuses against opposition leaders would be banned from entering the US as part of the sanctions announced Friday April 16.
Whereas a list of those targeted by the sanctions has not been made public, the US Secretary of State Mr. Blinken:
“Today I am announcing visa restrictions on those believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining the democratic process in Uganda, including during the country’s January 14 general elections and the campaign period that preceded it”.
Washington is also cutting funds to a number of programmes it is running with the Ugandan authorities, and cancelling a military exercise.
The US Government has also pinned Ugandan security forces for the deaths and injuries of dozens of innocent bystanders and opposition supporters, as well as violence against journalists that occurred before, during, and after the elections.
“Civil society organizations and activists working to support electoral institutions and transparent electoral processes have been targeted with harassment, intimidation, arrest, deportation, and spurious legal charges and denial of bank account access. The government limited accreditation for international and local election observers and civil society, but those who were able to observe the process noted widespread irregularities before, during, and after the election, which have undermined its credibility. This electoral process was neither free nor fair.”
A local website quoting sources reported the US will also discontinue or redirect funds for certain programmes involving the Ugandan Police Force, National Public Health Institute and Ministry of Health, and has cancelled plans to conduct a US military-sponsored aviation exercise in Kampala.