President Museveni last night admitted that there was “cheating” in the January 14 presidential elections, but said the mastermind and beneficiary was his main challenger Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine, of the National Unity Platform (NUP) and its supporters.

“Everybody in Uganda knows who cheated; it was Kyagaulanyi group. It was ballot-stuffing, massive rigging in other parts of the country led by the [NUP] youth organisations,” Mr Museveni said, citing irregularities that according to him were observed in Kampala, Wakiso, Kyotera and other districts in central Uganda,Bobi Wine defeated the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) flag bearer Yoweri Museveni across Buganda and Busoga by a wide margin, according to Electoral Commission (EC) results, which showed Mr Museveni nationally won with 58 per cent.

Bobi Wine on the other hand got 35 per cent, the poll body announced, a voting outcome the NUP leader rejected. He went to court, but withdrew his petition to challenge Museveni’s re-election mid-way, claiming the Supreme Court judges were biased.

Last week, he proclaimed himself winner of the election with 54 per cent and asked his supporters to mass up at EC offices to reclaim the stolen victory, a call that has gone nowhere.

In comments about the elections, his first since Bobi Wine opted out of court contest, Mr Museveni said Bobi and his NUP supporters exploited the “weakness” of some “parasitic” NRM vote protectors, and bribed police.

Without naming names, the President, who is also the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces, warned police officers, whom he said declined to act on reports of intimidation of NRM supporters, that they will be dismissed.