AU, EU, US, UK Urged to Condemn Museveni’s Attack on Uganda Opposition

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The African Union, European Union, United States, United Kingdom and all people of conscience have been urged to condemn in the strongest possible terms the ongoing assault on Uganda’s opposition by President Yoweri Museveni.

The call was made by a group of human rights activists, lawyers, journalists, academics, musicians, filmmakers and writers in Europe, North America and Africa in a statement released on Thursday.

Presidential and parliamentary elections were held in Uganda on January 14. 76-year-old Museveni, who had been in power since 1986, is seeking reelection in a poll characterized by arrest and intimidation of his opponents.

There are fears that the elections will not be free or fair as Museveni is determined to secure a sixth term in office.

A statement Thursday called on the international community to play an active role calling on the Uganda government to hold free and fair elections without intimidation and violence.

The statement read: “President Museveni, who has enjoyed strong Western backing for 35 years-and tens of billions of dollars in military and financial assistance– will contest his 6th term in office. His main presidential challenger, musician/legislator, Hon Robert Kyagulanyi MP, better known to us as Bobi Wine, as well as another opposition candidate Patrick Amuriat, have both been repeatedly arrested by security forces, and scores, perhaps hundreds of their supporters have been tortured and killed.

“Thousands of other opposition supporters are detained, many without access to lawyers, doctors or their families. On December 30, Wine’s entire entourage-security detail, media team and medical team was arrested. Some of them, all previously in good health, appeared in court on Monday, limping from injuries sustained while in police custody. They were given bail but have not been released. Since then, with a fresh team, Bobi continued his campaign. That team, as well, have all been arrested.”

The statement said that Wine’s campaign in particular had reached nearly every corner of the country, where massive crowds had braved teargas and bullets to cheer on his candidacy.

It however added that every mile of that journey had been fraught with danger.

“In November, demonstrations broke out across Uganda when Wine was detained for two days incommunicado, supposedly for violating COVID 19 regulations. The last time he’d been so detained, in 2018, he’d emerged on crutches. In response to the public outcry, Museveni deployed his private army, known as the Special Forces Command to “restore order”. At least 54 demonstrators and bystanders, including children, were gunned down and killed, and scores of others were severely injured.

“This is Museveni’s “democracy” that carried him victoriously through multiple elections over 35 years. Bobi still ventures forth to meet his constituents, following the itinerary provided by the Electoral Commission. But with his entire security team in detention, his only security is international media coverage, shining a harsh light on the regime’s excessive use of brutal force. Museveni claims Bobi’s support comes only from “foreign homosexuals.” The world is watching,” the statement added.

The statement said: “We the undersigned call upon the African Union, US, UK, EU and all people of conscience to condemn in the strongest possible terms the ongoing assault on Uganda’s opposition and commit to support a safe free and fair election for all Ugandan citizens.”

Below is the list of those that signed the statement:

ADAM CLAYTON – Musician U2 Ireland

ADAM SHATZ – Writer London Review of Books UK

ALAN KEMP – Marketing Executive UK

ALEXANDER STILLE – Professor at Columbia University USA

ALFIE BENGE – Artist UK

ALFONSO CUARON – Filmmaker Mexico

AMANDA DE CADENET – Filmmaker and Photographer USA

AMIR AMIRANI – Filmmaker UK

ANISH KAPOOR – Artist UK

ARCHBISHOP DESMOND TUTU – South Africa

BARONESS ROSIE BOYCOTT – Journalist UK

BELINDA ATIM – Uganda Sustainable Development Initiative UK

BETTE ADRIAANSE – Artist The Netherlands

BIYI BANDELE – Author, Film Director Nigeria

BRENDA GILBERT – Film Producer USA

BONO – Musician U2 Ireland

BRIAN ENO – Artist, Musician, Producer UK

BRONAGH GALLAGHER – Actress and Singer Northern Ireland

CATIE GINSBURG – Partisan Records USA

CHARLOTTE CHURCH – Singer Activist and Founder of the Awen Project UK

CHRIS MARTIN – Musician Coldplay USA

COSMUS ZAVUGA – University of Manitoba Canada

CORNELIA PARKER OBE – Artist UK

DANIEL KRAMER – Founder/Director The Visceral Glitch USA

DANIEL LANOIS – Musician/Music Producer Canada

DAVID MITCHELL – Novelist UK

DAVID KAU – Comedian and Filmmaker South Africa

DIANA NESLEN – Retired UK

DR NISHANT JOSHI – Doctor and Activist UK

DR MEENAL JOSHI – Doctor and Activist UK

DR PAUL WILLIAMS – Doctor and former MP – UK

EMILY YOUNG FRSS – Sculptor UK

FEMI ANIKULAPO KUTI – Musician Nigeria

FEMI FALANA – Human Rights Advocate Nigeria

FOLARIN ‘FALZ’ FALANA – Entertainer Nigeria

FRANK RYNNE – Senior Lecturer France

GARETH DAVIES – Publicist (retired) UK

GARY LUCAS – Musician USA

GEETA DAYAL – Writer UK

GEORGIA BYNG – Children’s Author UK

GUY BERRYMAN – Musician Coldplay USA

HARDI YAKUBU – Fighter-General The Economic Fighters League Ghana

HELEN EPSTEIN – Author and Journalist USA

HENRY LOUIS GATES – Harvard University USA

HENRY PORTER – Writer UK

HUGH CORNWELL – Songwriter USA

IAIN NEWTON – Marketing Consultant USA

IAIN OVERTON – Investigative Journalist, Author UK

JAMES THORNTON – Lawyer Client Earth UK

JEAN-MICHEL REUSSER – Music Producer France

JEFF SMITH – CEO Vanguard Africa USA

JESSE RIBOT – Professor at American University USA

JIM MCCARTY – Musician UK

JOE BOYD – Author and Record Producer UK

JON MCCLURE – Musician Reverend and the Makers UK

JONATHAN REEKIE – Arts Administrator Somerset House Trust UK

JONATHAN ROSENHEAD – Emeritus Professor London School of Economics UK

JOHN CARRUTHERS – Music Executive UK

JOHN GONCALVES – Musician Portugal

JOHN REYNOLDS – Music Producer UK

JONNY BUCKLAND – Musician Coldplay USA

JOSEPH NDAWULA – LAWYER UGANDA

J. PETER SCHWALM – Composer Germany

KALUNDI SERUMAGA – Journalist/Activist Uganda

KEITH RICHARDS – Author UK

KERRY SHAW – Impact Journalist – UK

KUNLE ANIKULAPO KUTI – Chief Curator The Kalakuta Museum Nigeria

LAURIE ANDERSON – Artist USA

LISE MAYER – Comedy Writer UK

LIVIU BABITZ – Being Myself and Entrepreneur UK

LUCY DURAN – Professor of Music SOAS UK

MARC RIBOT – Musician USA

MARCIAL PORTELA – CEO Kimac Brazil

MARGARET MARISSEN – Music Management Canada

MARK GETTES MD – Physician USA

MARK LEVINE – Professor at University of California USA

MARK LYNAS – Author, Journalist UK

MARY EVERS – Osteopath and Fellow of In Place of War UK

MARY ROBINSON – Former President of Ireland

MARTINA CONNORS – Arts Manager UK

MATT JONES – Principal Designer Google AI UK

MATTHEW OHIWEME OHIO – Entrepreneur and Producer Nigeria

MARTIN GOLDSCHMIDT – Chairman Cooking Vinyl Group

MARTINA CONNORS – Arts Manager UK

MELANIE PAPPENHEIM – Musician UK

MICHAEL ENGELBRECHT – Psychologist & Journalist Germany

MICHAEL UWEMEDIMO – Director Nigeria

MILTON ALLIMADI – Publisher Black Star News USA

MIRANDA PENNELL – Filmmaker UK

MUHAMMED LAMIN SAIDYKHAN -Coordinator Africans Rising The Gambia

NAMATA SERUMAGA-MUSISI – Architect/Activist Uganda

NIGEL HOUSE – Director Rough Trade UK

NIRIT SUMMERFELD – Actress/Musician Germany

NUNO GONCALVES – Musician Portugal

PAUL INGRAM – Senior Defence Policy Analyst UK

PETER GABRIEL – Musician UK

PETER SCHWARTZ – Senior VP Salesforce UK

PETRA BLAISSE – Interior and Landscape Architect Netherlands

PHIL HARVEY – Coldplay USA

RANDALL GRASS – General Manager Shanachie Records USA

REGGIE WATTS – Musician The James Corden Show USA

RICHARD-MARTIN BYAKULEKA – President CLOUD USA

RICHARD KUPER – Independent Researcher UK

RICK HOLLAND – Writer and University Professor UK

RIKKI STEIN – CEO Kalakuta Sunrise UK

ROBERT WALSH – Editor UK

ROBERT WYATT – Musician UK

ROGER WATERS – Musician UK

ROGERS OKOT-UMA – Chartered Physicist UK

RUTH DANIEL – CEO In Place of War UK

RUTH MACKENZIE – Artistic Director France/UK

SAHR NGAUJAH – Actor USA

SHIVUM SHARMA – Composer UK

SEUN ANIKULAPO KUTI – Musician Nigeria

SHELDON SHEPHERD – Actor and Poet Jamaica

SHIVUM SHARMA – Composer UK

SOL GUY – Activist and Filmmaker USA

STEPHEN BUDD – OneFest/Africa Express UK

STEPHEN HENDEL – Kalakuta Sunrise USA

THERESA BODEN – Writer UK

URI FRUCHTMANN – Producer Israel

VIKAS SHAH MBE – CEO Swiscot Group – UK

VINCENT MAGOMBE – African Affairs Analyst UK

WILL CHAMPION – Musician Coldplay USA

WILLIAM SIEGHART CBE – Writer UK

WOLE SOYINKA – Nobel Laureate NIGERIA

YANIS VAROUFAKIS – Member of Greek Parliament Greece

YASMIN SHARIFI-YAZDI – Co-Founder A Space Between UK

YENI ANIKULAPO KUTI – The New Afrika Shrine NIGERIA

ZENA WHITE – MD Partisan Records – USA