Rwenzori Consortium for Civic Competence (RWECO) & the members: Kali, Good Hope Foundation for Rural Development, Ride Africa and RICNET ere accredited as election observers during the Presidential and Parliamentary on 18th Feb, 2016 & local council elections on 24th Feb. 2016. RWECO and her members deployed a team of 150 as short term observers and long term observers in Bundibugyo, Ntoroko, Kabarole, Kyenjojo, Kyegegwa, Kamwenge and Kasese districts of Western Uganda. RWECO also deployed online platform where comments from observers were remitted through SMS and plotted on http://hrcp.or.ug/main. From 17th Feb, to 28th Feb, 2016, 164 messages were verified and viewed on the online platform. We commend the Electoral commission that accredited RWECO and her members during the elections.
However, as Ruwenzori region based observers, we note with concern the post -election violence that ensured during and after the elections on 18th and 24th Feb. 2016. RWECO condemns the post- election violence that were reported between 18th -19th Feb, 2016 at Kasese district Electoral Commission tally center at Kasese district Multi-purpose Hall, located in Nyakasanga, Kasese-Fort Portal Road. RWECO also condemns the post- election violence that was observed and reported in Bundibugyo District between 24th -27th Feb, 2016 after the election of district chairpersons and district councilors. These acts are either driven by personal egos and not accepting the outcome of the elections. Uganda is a democratic country for which we embrace both national and international standards of election observations and democratic processes for which citizens should welcome the out- come of the electoral process.
We wish therefore to state that:
- All acts of post- election violence be condemned by all actors and Uganda Police take the necessary steps to ensure that peace prevails in the region and country at large;
- RWECO and her members also appeals to the candidates who lost the elections to use peaceful and lawful means to address their demands not by inciting violence in the community;
- We also appeal to all stakeholders including, Police, state organs, Religious leaders, Cultural leaders and the media to join hands and give the citizens a message of hope that beyond elections, there is a life to live;
- Police bring the perpetrators of post- election violence to face the law of the land.
Jimmy Baluku Odyek