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News release

Uganda election: Museveni holds clear lead, but many don’t reveal preferences,

12 Jan 2021 Uganda

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni holds a nearly 3-to-1 lead over challenger Bobi Wine among registered voters willing to declare their voting intentions ahead of Thursday’s election, a new Afrobarometer survey shows, but many respondents would not say how they intended to vote, so the final outcome may be much closer. The nation could also be headed toward electing a more closely divided Parliament.

As of late December and early January, more than half (53%) of survey respondents who self-identified as registered to vote said they would cast their ballots for the long-time incumbent, who won 60.75% of the vote in claiming his fifth term in 2016. About one in five respondents (18%) favoured the pop star-turned-politician Bobi Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu. But about one-fourth of respondents did not disclose how they intend to vote.

The expected parliamentary vote mirrored the presidential vote fairly closely in terms of party preferences. Depending on how those who would not reveal their preference break, the Uganda Parliament could be quite closely divided after the upcoming election.