Kuti Family, Wole Soyinka, Chris Martin, Roger Waters & More Sign Petition For Fair Elections In Uganda

Uganda is holding elections today January 14, 2021. Ahead of them, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has reportedly banned all social media and messaging applications in the country and opposition politician Bobi Wine has had his home reportedly raided by the military. The petition below, signed by the likes of Femi Kuti, Seun Kuti, Wole Soyinka, Keith Richards, Roger Waters, and Chris Martin, calls for free and fair elections in Uganda. Read it in full:

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Uganda is scheduled to hold presidential and parliamentary elections on January 14, 2021, but no one expects them to be free or fair. 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.


Wine’s campaign in particular has reached nearly every corner of the country, where massive crowds have braved teargas and bullets to cheer on his candidacy. But every mile of that journey has 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.

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

ADAM CLAYTON – Musician U2 Ireland
ADAM SHATZ – Writer London Review of Books UK
ALEXANDER STILLE – Professor at Columbia University USA
ALFIE BENGE – Artist UK
ALFONSO CUARON – Filmmaker Mexico
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
BRIAN ENO – Artist, Musician, Producer UK
BRONAGH GALLAGHER – Actress and Singer Northern Ireland
CATIE GINSBURG – Partisan Records USA
CHRIS MARTIN – Musician Coldplay USA
CORNELIA PARKER OBE – Artist UK
DANIEL KRAMER – Founder/Director The Visceral Glitch USA
DANIEL LANOIS – Musician/Music Producer Canada
DAVID MITCHELL – Novelist UK
DIANA NESLEN – Retired 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
GEORGIA BYNG – Children’s Author UK
GUY BERRYMAN – Musician Coldplay 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
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 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
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
MARGARET MARISSEN – Music Management Canada
MARK GETTES MD – Physician USA
MARK LEVINE – Professor at University of California USA
MARK LYNAS – Author, Journalist UK
MARIE ROBINSON – Former President of Ireland
MATT JONES – Principal Designer Google AI UK
MATTHEW OHIWEME OHIO – Entrepreneur and Producer Nigeria
MARTIN GOLDSCHMIDT – Chairman Cooking Vinyl Group
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
NIRIT SUMMERFELD – Actress/Musician Germany
NUNO GONCALVES – Musician Portugal
PAUL INGRAM – Senior Defence Policy Analyst UK
PETER GABRIEL – Musician UK
PETRA BLAISSE – Interior and Landscape Architect Netherlands
PHIL HARVEY – Coldplay USA
RANDALL GRASS – General Manager Shanachie Records 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
SEUN ANIKULAPO KUTI – Musician Nigeria
STEPHEN BUDD – OneFest/Africa Express UK
STEPHEN HENDEL – Kalakuta Sunrise USA
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
YASMIN SHARIFI-YAZDI – Co-Founder A Space Between UK
YENI ANIKULAPO KUTI – The New Afrika Shrine NIGERIA
ZENA WHITE – MD Partisan Records – USA