NEW USA PRESIDENT BIDEN IMPOSES TRAVEL BAN ON UGANDAN GOVT OFFICIALS, CUTS FUNDING TO KEY PROGRAMS
Without naming anyone , the United States of America -a long standing ally of Uganda has now developed a list of Ugandan government officials who will not be allowed visas to enter the US for alleged human rights violation and political oppression during the hotly contested general elections held in January 2021.
Unlike Trump’s Republican party who cared less about the happenings in the world and Africa in particular , the new USA Democratic Party leadership led by Joe Biden – which is hardly five months in office – has now moved swiftly to impose travel restrictions and cut funding to President Yoweri Museveni,’s regime that has been in power for 35 years and counting.
In a statement by the new USA Secretary of State , Antony Blinken , the visa restrictions will apply to “those believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, undermining the democratic process” during the Jan. 14 election and its preparations.
“There are consequences for interfering in the democratic process,” Blinken added in a tweet .
Although , no names were revealed , the allegations have been dismissed by the government in Kampala for “lack of information, lack of knowledge (and) ignorance”. “We are not going to lose sleep over this,” Okello Oryem, state minister for foreign affairs, told the international media .
President Museveni’s main rival , Bobi Wine who rejected the results of the Presidential elections has been running to western countries and the USA to drum up support to put pressure on the Kampala regime for allegedly ‘stealing’ the elections, abducting his supporters mainly in the central region and not opening up the political space to allow opposition candidates campaign freely .
Political commentators say that the Americans are now acting on Bobi Wine ‘s appeal to mount pressure on their- hitherto strong ally -President Museveni . For decades now, Uganda has worked with the USA to stabilize the Great Lakes and Horn of Africa regions .
The USA has also canceled a training exercise with the Ugandan army in Kampala and Blinken said the Biden administration is cutting funding to several key programs in Uganda.
Due to what Kampala says are western nations backed opposition politicians in Uganda who want to cause instability , it has shutdown the popular social media platform -Facebook. There is also a marked shift in Uganda’s international relations with the superpowers with Kampala moving to consolidate its diplomacy with China , Russia and the UK who left the European Union last year .