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Social Network Analysis

Uganda in Crisis .

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In the lead-up to the East African nation’s January 2021 elections, pro-government trolls wielded tweets as a weapon to spread misinformation and disinformation against opposition leader Bobi Wine.

Social media has become an important tool in documenting political protests. It’s used for, among other things, coordinating protest activities, documenting scenes on the ground and even raising money to bail out protesters who’ve been arrested. It also provides evidence, particularly in instances where governments deny the use of excessive force on protesters. However, it is at times also used as a platform to push misinformation and disinformation, drawing attention away from the issues at hand. This was the case in Uganda, as the East African nation prepared for its January 2021 presidential elections. Twitter became a weapon for trolls to spread the wrong information against the opposition, as Uganda prepared to vote in November 2020, Robert Kyagulanyi - popularly known as Bobi Wine - was arrested on two separate occasions, triggering protests from his supporters. This investigation is centered around a set of misleading posts circulated in the wake of both protests, and the arrest of Bobi Wine’s bodyguard, labelling his supporters as destructive.

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