FEATURE-Ugandan oil region wary of future as election looms

Wed Feb 16, 2011 10:53am GMT

* Ugandan national elections on Feb. 18

* Rural, urban divide over how to vote

* Locals frightened of return to civil war

By Barry Malone

LAKE ALBERT, Uganda, Feb 16 (Reuters) - A track of seared orange leads through burnished yellow fields then gives way to a patchwork of brilliant green treetops and sugarcane farms, as the glistening blue water of Uganda's Lake Albert appears.

But attention has focused on this remote part of the east African country because of efforts to extract something with a much darker hue than its multi-toned earth: oil.

With presidential and parliamentary elections on Friday set to decide who will guide the country through its emergence as a Top 50 oil producer the stakes could not be higher in what has become a fierce and bitter tussle.

Posters of President Yoweri Museveni and his main rival Kizza Besigye plaster every available wall in the few small towns that sit on the Ugandan shore of the huge lake that is shared with Democratic Republic of Congo.   Continued...

Powered by Reuters AlertNet. AlertNet provides news, images and insight from the world's disasters and conflicts and is brought to you by Reuters Foundation.