As Uganda’s Museveni Takes On Young Challenger, What Happened To Africa’s ‘Forever Presidents’?

Ugandans go to the polls on Thursday, 14 January, with both the European Union and the United States having severe doubts about the electoral process.

President Museveni is seeking to hold onto power after 35 years in office and is facing a strong challenge from Bobi Wine, 38, a singer who grew up in one of Kampala’s biggest slums.

​The EU said this week Uganda’s elections had been “seriously tarnished” by the excessive use of force by the government and the US cancelled plans to send a team of election observers.

Museveni, wearing military uniform in a televised address on Tuesday 12 January, accused foreigners of interfering in Uganda and added: “We…don’t need lectures about anything from anybody. Because there’s nothing we don’t know.”

Bobi Wine told The Observer this week: “My warning to Museveni is to learn from history. It’s important that you respect the voices of the people of Uganda because, if you do not, you will also end up in the dustbin of history like your friends Gaddafi, Mugabe and Bashir.”

So how many of Africa’s other leaders are getting long in the tooth and how many have recently fell from power?

Equatorial Guinea

Teodoro Obiang Nguema, 78, has been the leader of the former Spanish colony of Equatorial Guinea – which is in – since 1979.

His longevity is largely due to his country’s oil and gas wealth which has enabled him to reward his supporters and pay off his opponents.

In 2004 a group of mercenaries led by a retired…

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