Monitoring Media Coverage

of the 2016 Elections
Final Report

Overview
Introduction and explanation of the methodology.
Findings from pre-election day period, starting September 2015 to
16 February 2016.
Findings from election day and post-election coverage.
Findings from social media usage by presidential candidates during
elections.

BACKGROUND
Why monitor media coverage of elections?
The goal of ACME’s project is to contribute to accurate, fair, impartial and
balanced coverage of the 2016 elections. ACME’s specific objectives are:
 To monitor, document and share trends in media coverage of the 2016
general elections.
To monitor media compliance with election reporting guidelines and
regulations.
To influence journalists, editors and media owners to provide information
that is more accurate, impartial and fair.
To empower civil society and the public to demand adherence to
professional standards in media coverage of elections.

Methodology (1)
Scope of study
A purposive sample of print and electronic media.
September-March coverage of presidential and parliamentary
elections by newspaper, television and radio.
Media content types: News, current affairs, and commentary.
Social media usage by presidential candidates during elections.
Data collection method
Story/article is the unit of analysis.
Content analysis.
Key informant interviews.

Methodology (2)
Sampling
9 newspapers
5 televisions channels
33 radio stations
Twitter profiles of presidential candidates Yoweri Museveni,
Kizza Besigye and Amama Mbabazi. The choice of Twitter
was informed by the frequency of use of the platform by the
three presidential candidates during elections, compared to
Facebook, for instance.

Methodology (3)
Sampling
PRINT PUBLICATIONS (9)

TELEVISION (5)

 Dailies - New Vision, Daily
 Public channels – UBC &
Monitor, Red Pepper, Bukedde
Bukedde

 Weeklies - The Independent,
Etop, Rupiny and Orumuri

 Private channels – NTV
Uganda, NBS & WBS

 Tri-weekly - The Observer

SOCIAL MEDIA/TWITTER

@kagutamuseveni
@amamambabazi
@kizzabesigye1

Methodology (4)
Sampling
RADIO (33)

 Languages: English, Luganda, Ateso, Luo, Lumasaba, Lusoga,
Lugbara and Runyakitara
 Stations: UBC, Bukedde, Arua One, Baba FM, Buddu FM, Bushenyi
FM, Capital Radio, Central Broadcasting Services, Dokolo, Kagadi
Broadcasting Services, Kasese Guide, KFM, Kioga Veritus FM, Mighty
FM, Nenah, Nile, Open Gate FM, Radio Amani, Radio pacis, Radio
Rhino, Radio Sapienta, Radio West, Rock FM, Rukungiri FM, Signal
FM, Simba, Spice FM, Sun, Top Radio, Voice of Africa FM, Voice of
Kigezi, Voice of Life, Voice of Teso, Voice of Toro

Monitoring/Research Questions (1)
What topics do the media focus on in their coverage of the elections?
What type of reports do the media produce [news,
commentary/opinion, features/special reports, etc]?
What is the nature of the reporting [conventional, interpretive,
investigative, enterprise]?
Who are the sources in media coverage [ordinary people, party
officials, candidates, regulators, civil society, diplomats, religious
leaders, central government officials, local leaders, police/security,
etc]?
What is the number and gender of the sources?

Monitoring/Research Questions (2)
Which political parties are focused on in media coverage?
Which presidential candidates are focused on in media coverage?
How much time or space is dedicated to each party?
How much time or space is dedicated to each presidential candidate?
What is the tone of coverage?
How often do news stories interrogate candidate or party promises?
How often do news stories include background and context?
How did presidential candidates use Twitter?

THE RESULTS
September 2015 – 16 February 2016

Type of election
Presidential election most covered by all three media types;
-Newspapers (65%)
-TV (70.8%)
-Radio (53.8%)
Observation: Radio covered the parliamentary election more
than newspapers and television.

Type of election by media type
Type of election (%)

13.3

15.4

21.7

13.8

22.7
23.5

70.8

65.0

53.8

Newspaper

TV

Presidential

Radio

Parliamentary

Both

Type of election by newspaper
Type of election (%) N=4,116
15.6
15.4

11.4

16.5

17.1

10.7

11.6

10.6

5.9
19.7

18.8

19.5

23.0

36.8

33.3
50.0

11.1

40.2
Both

69.0

71.5

72.8
55.0

70.1

66.4

57.4
30.3

40.2

Parliamentary
Presidential

Type of election by television
Type of election (%) N=2,274
14.5

15.0

14.9

17.7

16.0

20.9

15.2

12.9

8.0

10.3

64.7

69.9

72.2

74.3

73.7

Bukedde

NBS

NTV Uganda

Presidential

Parliamentary

UBC

Both

WBS

Type of content by media type
Type of article (%)

89.6

96.1

98.0

10.4

3.9

2.0

Newspaper

TV
Commentary

Radio
News

Total space/time to election coverage
Newspaper: A total of 3,005,615cm² space allocated to election
coverage. Of the total, Daily Monitor provided most space (26%),
followed by New Vision (25.1%).
Television: A total of 10,873 minutes allocated to election
coverage by TV stations monitored. NBS topped (31.5%) in
providing time to election stories.
Radio: Radio stations monitored allocated 10,257 minutes to
election coverage.

Space to election stories - newspaper
Space by publications (%) Area=3,005,615cm2
26.0

Monitor

25.1

New Vision
19.5

Red Pepper
12.9

Bukedde

9.1

The Observer
3.5

The Independent
1.8

Etop

1.2

Rupiny

0.9

Orumuri
0.0

5.0

10.0

15.0

20.0

25.0

30.0

Time to election stories - television
Time by station to elections (%) Time=10,873 minutes
31.5

NBS
26.4

NTV Uganda

17.1

UBC
13.4

Bukedde

WBS

11.5

Radio time to election coverage per region
Time to news stories per region (%) Time=10,257 minutes
24.9

Central
20.3

Kampala
17.7

Eastern
12.3

Western

11.9

West Nile
8.5

South-Western
Northern

4.5

Number of election stories
Newspaper: A total of 4,116 election stories were published in
newspapers between September and February. Of the total, Daily Monitor
(26%) had the highest number of stories and Rupiny (1.7%) had the least.
Television: A total of 2,274 election stories were aired by TV stations
monitored. Of the total, NTV Uganda (27.7%), aired the most number of
stories and WBS broadcast the least number WBS TV (18.7%).
Radio: There were 2,587 election stories aired on radio stations
monitored.

Number of election stories - newspaper
Number of election stories (%)N=4,116
26.6

Monitor
21.2

New Vision
19.6

Red Pepper
12.7

Bukedde
10.2

The Observer
3.2

Etop

2.8

The Independent
Rupiny
Orumuri

2.0
1.7

Number of election stories - television
Number of election stories (%) N=2,274
27.7

NTV Uganda
24.7

NBS
18.6

Bukedde

15.4

UBC

WBS

13.7

Number of radio news stories per region
Number of radio news stories per region (%) N=3,960 N1=3,879
23.4

Central
22.0

Kampala
14.7

Eastern
13.4

Western
11.2

West Nile
South-Western

Northern

7.8
7.5

Most covered candidate
Museveni was the most covered candidate by newspaper (38.8%),
television (45%) and radio stations monitored (41%).
Overall trend: Notable drop in space and time allocated to
Museveni, Besigye and Mbabazi between December and January.

Most covered candidate - newspaper
Space to candidates (%) Area=2,061,343.74cm2
38.8

Museveni

29.1

Mbabazi
21.3

Besigye
Baryamureeba

2.5

Mabirizi

2.3

Kyalya

2.1

Bwanika

2.0

Biraro

2.0

Most covered candidate per newspaper
Space to candidates by publication (%) Area=2,061,343.74cm2
23.8

30.9
44.0

51.3

52.1

43.4

4.2
4.5
1.9

25.0

1.2
1.2
1.9

19.9
27.3
1.6
1.6

3.9

4.7
3.8

26.4

5.4

11.3

23.8

21.6
1.4
2.0

19.3

3.5
1.8
2.0

12.6
0.6
0.5

5.5
5.7

2.1

6.2

16.7
6.4

47.0

Museveni
Kyalya

22.9
5.5

28.6
0.1

0.8

4.6

Mabirizi
Bwanika
Besigye
Biraro

31.9
20.4

1.1
0.4
0.8

1.9
1.9

0.0

24.4
2.3

34.5

41.2

0.5
0.7
0.4

3.0

1.3
3.2

37.6

25.9

33.6

Baryamureeba
Mbabazi

Most covered candidate - television
Time to candidates (%) Time=7,511 minutes
44.9

Museveni
21.6

Besigye
19.2

Mbabazi
4.6

Baryamureeba

3.3

Bwanika
Mabirizi

2.2

Kyalya

2.0

Biraro

2.0
0.0

5.0

10.0

15.0

20.0

25.0

30.0

35.0

40.0

45.0

Most covered candidate per TV station
Time to candidates (%) Time=7,511 minutes

39.9

30.2

40.5

49.0
2.2
2.6

72.6

3.3
2.4
2.4

6.1

21.3

2.2
2.2

2.4
2.6
2.2

27.6

4.8

28.5
3.8

1.4

2.5

24.0

Bukedde

Mbabazi

1.8

2.2

2.3

4.5
0.4

NBS

Besigye

17.1

12.3

NTV Uganda

Biraro

1.4
2.5

5.2

21.9

20.1

Baryamureeba

20.4

1.1
1.8

8.3

UBC

Bwanika

Mabirizi

WBS

Kyalya

Museveni

Most covered candidate - radio
Time to candidates (%) Time=7,634 minutes
41.1

Museveni
23.5

Mbabazi

22.8

Besigye
Kyalya

3.2

Baryamureeba

2.9

Bwanika

2.6

Biraro

2.0

Mabirizi

1.9
0.0

5.0

10.0

15.0

20.0

25.0

30.0

35.0

40.0

45.0

#Trends: Most covered candidate – newspaper
60

50

49
44.2

43.8
40

37
30

39.4

39

29.5
27.6

25.7

39.7

28

21.1

20

26.9

19.8

16.7

22.5
16.4

18.8

10

0

September

October

November

Museveni

December

Mbabazi

Besigye

January

February

#Trends: Least covered candidate – newspaper
Space to candidates (%)
4.6

Mabirizi

4.6

Baryamureeba

4.5

Bwanika

4.2

Biraro

3.6

Kyalya

3.4
3.0
2.9
2.6
2.3

2.5
2.1
1.6

1.6
1.5

1.2
1.0
0.8
0.7

0.3

November

December

January

February

#Trends: Most covered candidate – television
Time to candidates (%)
53.4
45.2

32.8

43.8
32.8

Mbabazi

24.2
19.1

NOVEMBER

Besigye

20.2
18.9

DECEMBER

Museveni

18.4
14.8

JANUARY

13.6

FEBRUARY

#Trends: Least covered candidate – television
Time to candidates (%)
Mabirizi
9.1

Biraro
Kyalya
6.6

Bwanika
Baryamureeba

4.5

4.3
3.7
3.5
3.3

4.6
3.5
1.8
1.3

3.4
2.5

1.1
0.9

0.5
0.4

November

December

2.9
2.4
2.4

January

February

#Trends: Most covered candidate – radio
46.7

45.8

39.3

37.3
33.2

27.5

28.2

24.4
24.4

20.8
17.4
10.8

November

December
Besigye

January
Mbabazi

Museveni

February

#Trends: Least covered candidate – radio
Time to candidates (%)
Mabirizi

4.7
4.6

Biraro
Bwanika
Kyalya
3.5

Baryamureeba

3.1

3.0

2.6

2.9
2.6

2.4
2.3
1.7
1.7

2.2

1.7
1.4

1.3

1.1
0.7
0.5
0.1

November

December

January

February

Pictures of presidential candidates
Museveni had the highest number of pictures overall (39.1%) and on
the front page (38.2%).
Kyalya had the least number of pictures overall (2.5%), while Bwanika
featured least on cover in terms of pictures (2%).

Pictures of candidates overall - newspaper
Number of pictures overall (%) n=2,552
39.1

Museveni
23.1

Mbabazi

22.4

Besigye
Baryamureeba

3.8

Bwanika

3.6

Mabirizi

2.8

Biraro

2.7

Kyalya

2.5

Pictures of candidates overall by newspaper
Number of pictures overall (%) n=2,552
2.3
2.9
1.8
4.1
4.5

5.2
4.7
3.2
5.5
4.7

18.7

1.1
1.7
1.9
1.9
1.3

29.5

1.3
0.9
2.2
1.3
1.8

31.9

2.3
0.6
2.6
2.3
4.3

1.8
1.8
3.6
5.4
3.6

17.8
26.8

22.3

3.2
5.3
4.3
4.3
4.3

22.3

19.8
21.9

9.6
5.8

23.1

2.7
4.1
4.1
10.8
4.1

14.9

15.3
29.2

23.2

21.3
21.2

27.2

Monitor

33.9

31.4

27.2

RedPepper

28.4

50.4

47.1

43.9

New Vision

5.8
1.9
1.9

The Observer

Bukedde

The
Independent

35.1

Orumuri

30.8

Rupiny

31.1

Etop

Mabirizi
Biraro
Kyalya
Baryamureeba
Bwanika
Mbabazi
Besigye
Museveni

Pictures of candidates on front page
Pictures on front page (%) n=408
38.2

Museveni
26.5

Mbabazi
24.5

Besigye
2.7

Baryamureeba
Biraro

2.2

Mabirizi

2.0

Kyalya

2.0

Bwanika

2.0
0.0

5.0

10.0

15.0

20.0

25.0

30.0

35.0

40.0

Pictures of candidates on front page per
newspaper
Pictures on front page (%) n=408
2.5
2.5
2.5
2.5
5.0

11.3

2.8
1.8
1.8
2.8
0.9

1.3
2.6
2.6
2.6
1.3

25.7

1.9
1.9

22.5

3.3
6.7
3.3
6.7
6.7

42.3

8.3

11.1

25.0
11.1

39.5

15.0

11.1

27.5

20.0

Mabirizi
Biraro
Kyalya

33.3

32.1
18.4

33.3

23.3

26.9

Bwanika

Mbabazi

58.8
50.0
32.1

New Vision

Baryamureeba

Monitor

31.6

RedPepper

30.0

26.9

The
Observer

Bukedde

Orumuri

33.3

Rupiny

33.3

Etop

Besigye
Museveni

Front page coverage
 There were 950 front page stories on presidential candidates.
 Mbabazi received the most (32.4%) coverage on front page,
followed by Museveni (30%) and Besigye (23.7%).
 Mabirizi least covered on front page (2.3%).
Overall trend: Mbabazi dominated front page from September
to October, before losing the slot to Museveni from November
onwards.

Front page coverage - newspaper
Front page coverage (%) n=950
32.4

Mbabazi
30.3

Museveni
23.7

Besigye
3.6

Baryamureeba
Biraro

2.7

Kyalya

2.5

Bwanika

2.4

Mabirizi

2.3
0.0

5.0

10.0

15.0

20.0

25.0

30.0

35.0

Front page coverage per newspaper
Front page coverage by candidate (%) n=950

33.8

30.8

27.9

34.6

3.3

2.5
2.5

2.8

2.8
2.8

30.8
19.7
2.8
4.2

7.7

3.4

3.4
3.4

3.6
3.6

1.0
1.0
1.5

6.8
6.8

18.2

3.4
4.4

6.8

25.4

Monitor

New Vision

20.8
1.0
1.5

28.6

29.6

0.8
0.8
0.8

Kyalya

21.4
24.8
7.1

Museveni
Mabirizi
Bwanika

0.8
1.6

Besigye
Biraro

9.1

28.3

Etop

6.8

22.0

15.4
Bukedde

29.2

28.3

15.4

31.0

27.3

Baryamureeba
44.1

42.9

40.8

18.2

Orumuri

RedPepper

Rupiny

The
Observer

Mbabazi

#Trends: Front page coverage of candidates
Front page coverage (%) n=950
54.5

40.2
33.6

32.9
26.8

39.6
36.1
31.5
28.8

35.2
30.2
27.8

21

20.8

20.8

23.1
18.7

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

JANUARY

FEBRUARY

7.3

SEPTEMBER

OCTOBER

Mbabazi

Besigye

Museveni

Most covered topic
 Politics was the most covered topic overall by newspaper,
television and TV from September to February.
 However, in September and October, the proportion of politics
covered by newspapers was higher than in other months.

Most covered topic by media type
Newspaper (%) n=5,462
36.4

Politics

10.0

Economy
Security

7.9

Infrastructure

7.9

Health

7.6
6.6

Education
Agriculture

5.5

Human rights

5.1

Corruption

3.6

Energy

2.8

Natural resources
Land

Television(%) n=4,707

Radio (%) n=6,112
30.8

Politics

44.4

Politics

Economy

10.4

Security

Infrastructure

10.0

Economy

7.7

Infrastructure

7.0

Education

6.1

Health

5.5

Human rights

5.1

Agriculture

4.1
3.2

9.2

Security

8.1

Health

7.1

Education

5.8

Agriculture
Human rights

4.4

10.1

Energy

3.3

Corruption

2.5

Corruption

3.1

Energy

1.6

2.3

Natural resources

2.9

Natural resources

1.5

2.8

Other

1.5

Other

1.2

Land

Foreign affairs

0.7

Other

1.5

Land

1.4

Petition

0.0

Foreign affairs

0.7

Foreign affairs

0.9

#Trends: Most covered topics – newspaper (1)
SEPTEMBER (%) n=441
66.7

Politics
Economy
Human rights
Security
Other
Education
Infrastructure
Agriculture
Corruption
Health
Land
Natural resources
Energy
Foreign Affairs

6.6
6.1
5.0
3.2
2.7
2.7
2.3
1.8
1.8
0.7
0.2
0.2
0.0

NOVEMBER (%) n=2,115

OCTOBER (%) n=723

Politics

59.2

Politics
Human rights
Security
Economy

Other
Corruption
Infrastructure
Education
Health
Agriculture
Energy
Natural resources
Land
Foreign Affairs

7.3
7.1
4.7
3.6
3.5
3.2
2.9
2.5
2.4
1.5
0.8
0.7
0.7

Economy
Education
Infrastructure
Security
Health
Agriculture
Corruption
Human rights
Energy
Natural resources
Land
Other
Foreign affairs

28.1
11.4
9.3
8.4
8.3
7.6
6.7
5.4
4.0
3.3

2.6
2.25
1.85
0.9

#Trends: Most covered topic – newspaper (2)
DECEMBER (%) n=1,720

JANUARY (%) n=1,719
31.5

Politics

30.5

Politics

11.2

Economy

10.4

Economy

Health

10.0

Infrastructure

8.6

Security

8.1

8.7

Infrastructure
Security

7.4

Health

7.9

Education

7.4

Education

7.4

Agriculture

6.9

7.0

Agriculture

4.8

Human rights

4.5

Human rights

Corruption

4.4

Natural resources

3.7

Corruption

3.5

2.3

Energy

3.1

2.3

Land

3.0

Energy
Land
Natural resources
other
Foreign affairs

3.0

0.9
0.4

FEBRUARY (%) n=1,014

Other

0.8

Foreign affairs

0.8

31.9

Politics

11.2

Economy

10.4

Security
Infrastructure

8.7

Health

8.5
6.5

Education
Humanrights

3.9

Energy

3.9

Agriculture

3.9

Corruption

3.5

Natural resources

3.0

Land

2.6

Foreign affairs
Other

1.6
0.7

Tone of coverage
 Generally, the tone of coverage by all three media types
was neutral, averaging 60%.
Newspaper: Orumuri (97%), Etop (74%) and New Vision (73%)
had stories with the most neutral tone.
Television: Bukedde (66.7), NTV (66%) and UBC (60%) aired
stories with the most neutral tone.
Candidates: Mbabazi and Besigye had the most number of
stories with negative tone across all three media.

Story tone by media type
Tone of coverage (%)

100%

15.5

9.3

11.0

61.3

60.5

29.4

28.5

90%
80%
70%

60%

60.7

50%
40%

30%
20%

23.8

10%
0%

Newspaper

TV

Positive

Neutral

Radio

Negative

Newspaper story tone
Tone of coverage (%) N=4,116 N1=2,796
9.5

15.7

15.5

9.3
27.2

14.5

12.5

0.0
22.1

36.3
73.3

60.7

62.5

61.6

74.5

57.2

97.6
67.5

54.4
17.2

23.6

22.9

25.0

15.6

Positive

10.9

Neutral

Negative

2.4

10.4

Television story tone
Tone of coverage (%) N=2,274, N1=1,820
6.2

3.2

9.9

13.3

13.5

59.9
66.7

55.6

27.2

31.1

Bukedde

NBS

55.2

66.1

36.9
24.0

NTV Uganda

Positive

Neutral

UBC

Negative

31.3

WBS

Newspaper story tone by candidate
Tone of coverage (%) n=2409
18.8

5.7

5.4

62.0

63.4

4.5

5.8

5.2

67.3

67.5

63.5

28.2

26.7

31.3

62.1

62.2

19.0

17.8

32.3

31.3

20.2

Positive

Neutral

Negative

14.8

59.5

25.7

TV story tone by candidate
Tone of coverage (%) n=2,372
15.4

3.3

4.7

62.5

58.8

4.0

60.5
61.3

62.6

22.1

10.8

34.2

36.5

28.0

Positive

35.5

Neutral

7.5

62.3

30.2

Negative

6.9

55.2

37.9

7.5

61.9

30.7

Radio story tone by candidate
Tone of coverage (%) n=3,296
12.6

2.2

2.1

58.0

52.8

1.1

2.7

52.6

49.3

2.8

57.6

59.7

61.4

26.0

11.0

39.8

46.3

45.1

47.9

29.2

Positive

Neutral

Negative

39.6

9.0

58.6

32.4

#Trends: Newspaper story tone
Tone of coverage (%)
66.7
58

58.2

56.4

21.4
20.5

28.2

30.4

SEPTEMBER

13.6

13.2

17.7
15.6

OCTOBER

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

Positive

Neutral

Negative

63.3

21.6
15.1

JANUARY

62.6

25.5
11.9

FEBRUARY

#Trends: Television story tone
Tone of coverage (%)
69.9
62.1

64.1

27.9

26.9

62.1

29.3

20.1
10

10.0

9.0

8.6

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

JANUARY

FEBRUARY

Positive

Neutral

Negative

#Trends: Radio story tone
71.3
60

63.5

50.7

37.2
32
24.3
18.8
12.2

9.9

8

November

December

Positive

January

Neutral

Negative

12.1

February

Reporting approach
 The most dominant reporting approach by all three media types
was Conventional.
 Among the newspapers, Etop, The Independent, The Observer
stood out for having a fair mix of the four reporting approaches.
Overall trend:
 Conventional reporting highest between November and
February.
 Dominance of conventional reporting pronounced in radio and
TV.

Reporting approach by media type
Reporting approach (%)

8.6
11.1

5.5
4.7
6.7

7.9
4.6
4.9

83.1

82.7

10.3

69.9

Newspaper

Conventional

TV

Interpretive

Radio

Investigative

Enterprise

Reporting approach per newspaper
Reporting approach (%) N=4,116 N1=3,688
6.5
10.0
5.8

9.9

10.4

11.0

8.2

16.4

16.0

12.8

3.2
3.6
3.0

9.2

32.2

16.1

77.7

13.6
4.2

16.7

11.8
4.4

16.7
1.5

16.2
16.1
24.7

90.1
66.9

56.4

24.7

66.7

65.2

67.6

50.0
34.4

Conventional

Interpretive

Investigative

Enterprise

Reporting approach per TV station
Reporting approach (%) N=2,274, N1=2,179

2.1
0.7
0.7

11.0
8.5
7.5

7.5

8.6

Bukedde

NBS

Conventional

7.2

8.8

96.4
73.0

3.9
2.9

4.3
0.9

4.9

86.2

78.8

NTV Uganda

Interpretive

85.9

UBC

Investigative

WBS

Enterprise

Background and context
Most election stories by the media contained background and
context, but the percentages of stories that lacked it is
worrying.

Background & context by media type
Background context (%)

63.0

56.6

50.7

37.0

43.4

49.3

Newspaper

TV

No

Radio

Yes

Background & context by newspaper
Background (%) N=4,116 N1=2,135

49.4

35.9
78.2

50.6

55.2

62.0

62.1

54.5
76.1

79.7

64.1
44.8

38.0

37.9
21.8

23.9

20.3

No

45.5

Yes

Background & context by television
Background (%) N=2,446, N1=1,455

47.9

52.1

Bukedde

52.1

47.9

NBS

60.9

66.1

59.6

39.1

33.9

40.4

NTV Uganda

No

UBC

Yes

WBS

#Trends: Background & context - newspaper
Background & context (%)
67.7

70.6
65.6

62.8
54.9
45.1

32.3

SEPTEMBER

34.4

52.3
47.7
No

37.2

Yes

29.4

OCTOBER

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

JANUARY

FEBRUARY

#Trends: Background & context - television
67.6
60.7

59.8
50.3
49.7
40.2

39.3

32.4

November

December

January
No

Yes

February

#Trends: Background & context - radio

61

59.0
52.2

52.4
47.6

November

47.8
39

41.0

December

January

No

Yes

February

Interrogation of claims
 Generally, the media did not interrogate claims and promises
made by presidential candidates.
 It’s however noteworthy that Daily Monitor introduced the
Factchecker and Truthometer as a way of interrogating claims
and promises by presidential candidates.

Interrogation of claims by media type
Interrogation of claims (%)

38.2

61.8

Newspaper

22.3

26.3

77.7

73.7

TV

Radio
No

Yes

Interrogation of claims by newspaper
Interrogation of claims (%) N=4,116 N1=1,882
8.6
30.1

46.2

42.0

28.7

37.5

46.0

48.8

52.9
91.4

69.9

53.8

58.0

71.3

62.5

54.0

No

Yes

47.1

51.2

Interrogation of claims & promises by television
Interrogation of claims (%) N=2,274, N1=1,249
9.0
30.2

91.0
69.8

Bukedde

NBS

21.5

20.0

78.5

80.0

NTV Uganda
No

UBC
Yes

30.6

69.4

WBS

#Trends: Interrogation of claims - newspaper
Interrogation of claims (%)
61.9

63.4

62.2

61.8

38.1

36.6

37.8

38.2

65.1
60.1

39.9
34.9

No
Yes

SEPTEMBER

OCTOBER

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

JANUARY

FEBRUARY

#Trends: Interrogation of claims - television
Interrogation of claims (%)
81.5
76.2

76.8

70.8

No
Yes

29.2
23.8

23.2

JANUARY

FEBRUARY

18.5

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

#Trends: Interrogation of claims - radio
82.8
76.2
70

70.8

30

29.2

23.8
17.2

November

December

January

No

Yes

February

Sourcing
Number of sources
 Overall, most election stories were single-sourced.
 The problem of single sourcing more pronounced in radio.
Overall trend: An increase in the use of at least two sources.
Gender of sources
 Male voices dominant in election stories.
Overall trend: Increase in number of female sources between January
and February across all three media types.

Number of sources by media type
Number of sources (%)

9.8

75.0

62.0

57.2

One source

16.3

21.0

19.1

Newspaper

3.1
5.6

8.4
8.6

13.8

TV
Two sources

Radio
Three sources

Multiple sources

Gender of sources by media type
Gender of sources (%)

84.2

85.4

87.1

15.8

14.6

12.9

Newspaper

TV
Female

Radio
Male

Gender of sources by newspaper
Gender of sources (%) n=6,607

82.8

17.2

86.1

13.9

85.7

14.3

85.9

14.1

85.6

14.4

Female

67.9

32.1

Male

66.3

33.7

81.3

90.4

18.7

9.6

Gender of sources by television
Gender of sources (%) n=3,569

79.5

87.1

86.0

89.7

87.1

20.5

12.9

14.0

10.3

12.9

Bukedde

NBS

NTV Uganda

Female

UBC

Male

WBS

#Trends: Gender of sources - newspaper
Gender of sources (%)
84.3

82.2

84.1

82.7

85.3

83.6

Male
Female

15.7

SEPTEMBER

17.8

OCTOBER

15.9

17.4

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

14.7

16.4

JANUARY

FEBRUARY

#Trends: Gender of sources - television
Gender of sources (%)
87.4

84.0

88.5

85.7

Female
Male

12.6

NOVEMBER

16.0

DECEMBER

11.5

JANUARY

14.3

FEBRUARY

#Trends: Gender of sources - radio
88.6

86.7

87.8

85.9

11.4

13.3

12.2

14.1

November

December

January

February

Female

Male

Sourcing by occupation
Presidential candidates are dominant sources in election stories.
Dearth in the use of experts as sources, particularly by radio (2%).
Inclusion of ordinary persons’ voices in election stories was
encouraging.

Occupation of source by media type
Presidential candidate

26.0

Presidential candidate

16.1
15.4
13.1

Ordinary person
Party official
Parliamentary candidate
Candidates agent
Expert
Police Representative
Electoral Commission…
Anonymous
NGO/CSO official
Executive
Religious leader
Election observer
Judicial Officer

Business person
Army
Donor

4.3
4.2
3.6
3.6
3.6
2.8
1.9
1.6
1.2
1.1
0.6
0.5
0.2

Radio (%) n=4,963

Television (%) n=3,601

Newspaper (%) n=6,900

15.4
Ordinary person
10.7
Party official
9.8
Electoral Commission…
6.0
Expert
4.4
Candidates agent
4.0
NGO/CSO official
3.7
Police Representative
3.7
Religious leader
1.8
Executive
1.4
Judicial Officer
1.2
Election observer
0.9
Anonymous
0.9
Army
0.6
Donor 0.2
Business person 0.2
Other (Specify) 0.1

Parliamentary candidate

34.9

Presidential candidate

18.1
Party official
13.9
Electoral Commission…
9.7
Ordinary person
6.4
Police Representative
5.2
Candidates agent
4.8
NGO/CSO official
4.6
Executive
2.4
Religious leader
2.3
Expert
2.0
Anonymous
1.2
Judicial Officer
1.2
Election observer
0.8
Army
0.6
Donor 0.2
Other 0.1
Business person 0.1

Parliamentary candidate

26.5

POST-ELECTION COVERAGE
Period: 18 February - 31 March 2016
Key events: Election day, the petition and activities of the opposition

Space/Time to post-election coverage
New Vision and NTV Uganda provided the most space and
time respectively, to coverage of post-election activities.
Besigye was the most covered presidential candidate by radio
and television, while newspapers covered Museveni most.

Space to post-election coverage - newspaper
Space by publication(%) Area=352,424.35 Cm2
23.7

New Vision
18.5

Red Pepper
17.0

Monitor
14.1

The Observer
11.0

Bukedde
7.1

The Independent
Orumuri

Etop
Rupiny

3.2
2.9
2.6

Time to post-election coverage - television
Time by TV station (%) Time=1,164 minutes
43.4

NTV Uganda
31.8

NBS

15.9

WBS

Bukedde

UBC

4.8

4.2

Most covered candidate - newspapers
Space to candidates (%) Area=232,174.58 Cm2
38.1

Museveni
30.8

Besigye
27.5

Mbabazi
Mabirizi

0.9

Bwanika

0.8

Biraro

0.7

Baryamureeba

0.6

Kyalya

0.5

Most covered candidate - television
Time to candidates (%) Time=840 minutes
37.8

Besigye
34.7

Mbabazi

21.3

Museveni
2.5

Biraro
Baryamureeba

1.7

Bwanika

1.6

Kyalya

0.5

Most covered candidate by television
Time to candidates (%) Time=840 minutes
20.5

18.6

23.8

18.0
28.5
2.2

0.9
1.2
0.4
2.0

2.9
9.3

54.2

44.0

Bukedde

Kyalya
Bwanika

37.2

Besigye
2.4

25.2

29.5

Museveni

33.0

NBS

Biraro

5.4

1.3

59.3

50.3

Mbabazi

29.9

NTV Uganda

Baryamureeba

UBC

WBS

Most covered candidate – radio
Time to candidates (%) Time=1,110 minutes
33.4

Besigye
29.9

Museveni
23.8

Mbabazi
3.7

Mabirizi
Bwanika

2.5

Baryamureeba

2.3

Biraro

2.3

Kyalya

2.0
0.0

5.0

10.0

15.0

20.0

25.0

30.0

35.0

Electoral administration by media type
(election day)
Electoral administration (%)
13.8
0.6

15.5

1.4

1.1

24.1

23.1

23.8

22.1

21.7

29.8

39.5

36.7

29.8

Newspaper
Results

17.1

Administration

TV
Transparency&Accountability

Radio
Voter Education

Voter Information

Electoral administration by newspaper
Electoral administration (%) n=793
2.3

3.7
1.9

3.0
15.7

26.9
33.0

32.7

0.6

13.2
20.6

11.8
17.6

3.8

6.7
20.0

27.3

23.1

23.1

24.2
21.6

29.4

24.3

29.4

34.6

Voter Education

19.0

73.3

72.7

Transparency&Accountability

58.2
43.2
29.4

37.4

Voter Information

36.8

41.2

38.5

Administration
Results

Electoral administration by television
Electoral administration (%) n=281
13.3
1.9

33.3

21.0

1.0

33.3

20.4

6.7

20.0

21.4

27.0

18.9

23.8
25.2

42.9

13.3

40.0
26.7

Bukedde

Results

32.0

4.8

54.1

19.0
NBS

Administration

NTV Uganda

Transparency&Accountability

UBC

WBS

Voter Education

Voter Information

Most covered topic - newspapers
Most covered topics (%) n=1,042
Politics
Petition
Security
Human rights
Economy
Corruption
Infrastructure
Agriculture
Other
Education
Health
Land
Foreign affairs
Natural resources
Energy

39.7
16.4

11.7
11.6
4.0
3.9
2.3
2.1
1.9
1.7
1.3
1.2
1.2
0.6
0.4

Most covered topic - television
Most covered topic (%) n=411
33.82

Politics

25.06

Petition

17.52

Security

15.09

Human rights
Corruption
Other
Foreign affairs
Economy
Education
Natural resources
Health
Land
Energy
Agriculture
Infrastructure

3.16
2.43
1.22
0.73
0.49
0.24
0.24
0
0
0
0

Most covered topic - radio
Most covered topics (%) n=1,073
Politics
Security
Petition
Human rights
Other
Foreign affairs
Economy
Corruption
Education
Health
Agriculture
Infrastructure
Land
Natural resources
Energy

42.8
19.1
18.1

12.2
1.4
1.4
1.4
1.1
0.8
0.7
0.4
0.4
0.2
0.1
0.0

Candidate tone
Tone of coverage for presidential candidates was
dominantly neutral across all three media types.

Tone of newspaper coverage by candidate
Tone of coverage (%) n=559
12.8

21.4

73.8

50.0

13.4

17.6

23.8

47.1

26.7

26.7

40.0

33.3

33.3

40.0

64.4
28.6

35.3
11.9

Positive

Neutral

Negative

30.8

38.5

30.8

15.3

66.5

18.2

Tone of television coverage by candidate
Tone of coverage (%) n=220
14.1

33.3
69.2

12.7

25.3

100.0

66.7
16.7

62.7

100.0

Neutral

72.7

14.5

12.0

Positive

100.0

Negative

Tone of radio coverage by candidate
Tone of coverage (%) N=751, N1=454, n=645
5.9

70.4

23.7

3.9

10.6
66.7

58.3

33.3

41.7

61.9

69.6

68.4

69.8

38.1

30.4

31.6

26.3

63.5

25.9

Positive

Neutral

Negative

Sourcing
Single-sourced stories dominant in post-election coverage
with Bukedde newspaper and UBC TV having the highest
number of single-sourced stories.
Judicial officers were the most quoted sources in postelection reporting.

Number of sources by media type
Number of sources (%)
3.1
6.6

26.1

21.5
58.1

14.6
20.5

6.3
10.8

68.8

38.7
24.8

Newspaper
One source

TV
Two sources

Radio
Three sources

Multiple sources

Number of sources by newspaper
Number of sources (%) N=668, N1=555
33.9
13.6

20.0

21.0
43.4
27.2

15.6

7.9
4.8

10.0

17.5

30.0

14.4
27.2

11.8

28.2

24.7

60.0

50.0
31.6

30.3

One source

Two sources

29.6
14.8

47.4
69.8

50.0

16.7
33.3

14.5
24.3

5.3
15.8

Three sources

Multiple sources

55.6

Number of sources by television
Number of sources (%) N=252, N1=222

30.8
0.0

30.8

52.6

54.3
7.7

79.2

30.8

5.3

7.4

8.6
38.5

Bukedde

2.6

29.6

NBS
One source

10.5

61.5

31.6

10.4
7.8
NTV Uganda
Two sources

Three sources

UBC

WBS
Multiple sources

Sourcing by occupation - newspapers
Sourcing by occupation (%) n=1,624
Judicial Officer
Parliamentary candidate
Presidential candidate
Ordinary person
Electoral Commission official
Party official
Expert
Police Representative
Candidates agent
NGO/CSO official
Anonymous
Report/Policy/Law
Religious leader
Election observer
Public Officer
Witness
Army
Donor
Business person

15.6
12.5
11.0
9.9
9.2
8.4
7.3

6.7
4.6
3.0
2.7
2.3
2.1
2.0
1.4
0.6
0.5
0.3
0.1

Sourcing by occupation - television
Sourcing by occupation (%) n=1,089
Judicial Officer
Presidential candidate
Party official
Parliamentary candidate
Ordinary person
Candidates agent
Police Representative
Expert
Electoral Commission official
NGO/CSO official
Public Officer
Religious leader
Election observer
Army
Anonymous
Report/Policy/Law

18.46
16.8
12.49
9.37
8.63
7.44
6.98
4.96
4.96
4.13
1.74
1.56
0.83
0.83
0.55
0.28

Sourcing by occupation - radio
Sourcing by occupation (%) n=888
Judicial Officer
Parliamentary candidate
Presidential candidate
Party official
Police Representative
Electoral Commission official
NGO/CSO official
Expert
Ordinary person
Candidates agent
Religious leader
Public Officer
Election observer
Army
Executive
Witness
Uganda Communications…
Donor
Business person
Anonymous

14.5
13.0
12.2
12.1
11.7
11.0
5.9

4.6
3.6
3.2
2.8
2.4
1.0
0.7
0.6
0.2
0.2
0.2
0.1
0.1

SOCIAL MEDIA USAGE IN THE 2016 ELECTIONS
 According to a 2015 Afrobarometer report, 6% of Ugandans get their news from social
media channels. Majority of them (95%) use Facebook as their main news channel.
 In this study, we explore how Museveni, Mbabazi and Besigye used Twitter during the
elections.

Introduction
Three candidates – Museveni, Mbabazi, Besigye - were chosen on the
basis of the frequency of their use of Twitter and the level of influence of
their tweets.

Selection, tools and handles
Why Twitter?

Searchable conversations.

Tools
Socialbakers, Yoast and Twitter internal analytics.
Twitter handles

 @kagutamuseveni
 @amamambabazi
 @kizzabesigye1

Note: Candidates also used their party/group Twitter handles for
campaigns, but only those through which the candidates officially ‘speak’
were monitored.

Definitions - 1
Total followers: The total number of profile followers during a
selected time range.
Relative change in followers: The percentage change in followers
during a selected time range.
Absolute change in followers: The total change in followers during a
selected time range.
Interactions are both outgoing and incoming
Total tweets: The total number of tweets made by a profile during
the selected time range.
Average tweets per day: The sum of all engagement rates of original
tweets made over the month divided by the total tweets made during
the same time period.

Definitions -2

Retweet count: Number of times the Profile has been retweeted
during a selected time range.
Mentions: Total number of ‘organic’ mentions made about the
Profile during a selected time range.
Influencers: List of the top users most frequently interacting with the
Profile through individual mentions.
Outgoing interactions: Replies, retweets or mentions of a user by the
Profile.
Incoming interaction: Replies, retweets or mentions of the Profile by
users.
Total following: The total number of users the Profile is following
during a selected time range.

Total number of followers
Total Number of followers(%)
250,000
200,000
150,000

100,000
50,000
December

January

Yoweri Museveni

February

Amama Mbabazi

Kizza Besigye

March

Trends in Twitter followers
All three candidates had a steady increase in number of followers
each month.
In relative terms, Besigye’s following grew the most by 20.8% in
January compared to Mbabazi (7.2%) and Museveni (10.6%).

Trends in Twitter followers
February

March

Yoweri Museveni

4.37%

3.84%

Amama Mbabazi

3.37%

5.19%

Kizza Besigye

32.22%

16.27%

Absolute change in number of followers
35,000
30,000
25,000
20,000
15,000
10,000
5,000
-

December

Yoweri Museveni

January

February

Amama Mbabazi

March

KizzaBesigye

Following
There is a significant difference in the approach of candidates to
receiving information through their Twitter timelines, indicated by the
number of profiles they follow. Yet the larger and more diverse your
following, the wider one’s topics and the more likely one is to engage
in discussion, share information and respond to queries.

Total number of Twitter profiles following
December

January

February

March

14

16

17

17

6,241

6,326

6,342

6,579

319

323

325

331

Total number of tweets
300
250
200
150
100
50
0
December

January

Yoweri Museveni

February

Amama Mbabazi

March

Kizza Besigye

Average tweets per day
December

January

February

March

4.6

5.4

4.9

1.4

0.4

8.6

4.1

0.2

0.9

0.9

1.4

2.1

S
E
L
E
C
T

T
W
E
E
T
S

S
E
L
E
C
T

T
W
E
E
T
S

Total number of interactions
35000

30000
25000
20000
15000
10000

5000
0
December
Yoweri Museveni

January

February

Amama Mbabazi

March
Kizza Besigye

Total number of retweets
7,000

6,000
5,000
4,000
3,000
2,000
1,000
-

December

Yoweri Museveni

January

February

Amama Mbabazi

March

Kizza Besigye

Total number of mentions
30,000
25,000
20,000
15,000
10,000
5,000
-

December

Yoweri Museveni

January

February

Amama Mbabazi

March

Kizza Besigye

Top influencers from December - February
@kagutamuseveni

@amamambabazi

@kizzabesigye1

1. @TeamSevo
992 mentions

1. @Tjozra
899 mentions

1. @FDCOfficial1
731 mentions

2. @lenonmullar
908 mentions
(Just one month- Jan)

2. @talemwa2008
806 mentions

2. @ByamugishaMoses
322 mentions

3. @amonrukundo
635 mentions

3. @jude_mugabi
749 mentions

3. @jude_mugabi
302 mentions

4. @kiryowakk
626 mentions

4. @Amama2016
643 mentions

4. @BMKGift
214 mentions

5. @hkashillingi
376 mentions

5. @JMNkangi
595 mentions

5. @#vote4change
212 mentions

@lenonmullar … NOT a ‘bot’

Total number of replies
3,000
2,500
2,000
1,500
1,000
500
-

December

Yoweri Museveni

January

February

Amama Mbabazi

March

Kizza Besigye

Response to questions on Twitter
On the whole, candidates were slow to answer questions directly
sent to their Twitter handles.
Of the 3,410 questions addressed to @kagutamuseveni, none were
responded to from December 2015 to March 2016.
@AmamaMbabazi answered eight out of the 2,148 questions sent to
his handle.
@KizzaBesigye1 received the fewest number of questions – 1,789 –
and responded to two of them in the period monitored.

Summary of conclusions
All three presidential candidates used Twitter in the same manner that
they use traditional media platforms: as a space to provide information,
but not a space to listen, respond and debate.
There were numerous opportunities lost by the presidential candites in
engaging with large following; such as answering questions and
distinguishing themselves from their rivals by mentioning them by
name (handle).
While supporters of the three candidates were quite combative on
Twitter, they kept the conversation cordial, only hinting on their rivalry
in covert ways.

Inquiries and information:
Website: www.acme-ug.org
Facebook: ACME.UG
Twitter: ACME_Uganda
Email: info@acme-ug.org

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