This Sheema North By-Election is the latest of plenty By-Elections during the 10th Parliament, as there been plenty of these, because of the new districts and the sudden deaths of Members of Parliament. However, this one is coming at a precious time. As the Police and Army are more alert, the violence are getting more striking and in the open. The blatant disregard isn’t only for the high-level activists and the leadership of the opposition. But anyone can be beaten to pulp and anyone can be shot by a stray-bullet. That is why, couldn’t the Electoral Commission and the National Resistance Movement (NRM) halted this one?
There has been enough death and problematic activity since mid-August. This is just mere months after and the ramifications of the latest by-elections is still in the wind. The wind-shield of the President is just one out of plenty accusations and possible unanswered violent activity. As the torture of the opposition leaders, their charges and the legal jeopardy many are in. This one will not go as the previous ones has. Where the camping of Opposition until final days of voting. The By-Election have looked like war-zones, but the deaths of civilians and the use of Presidential Guards (Special Force Command) of late, puts the hope for a peaceful outcome much less likely.
This Sheema North By-Election, which open up after NRM MP Elioda Tumwesigye had one his second seat and open the previous one he won. That is why, this election even are scheduled, as the one in Arua Municipality was because of the assassination of Hon. Ibrahim Abiriga. Therefore, the sudden acts and the control from the NRM. Is the reason for these extra races.
At this point, it is hard to believe in peace, as the authorities are speaking that the Security Organizations are acting with restraint, as they shoot live-bullets into crowds and beat the public with sticks. They are acting as occupants in their own country, instead of having steady trust, they are beating the people into submission. If not, that what they hope with the physical torture and hurt.
The 8th October 2018 is supposed to matter, this is to vote for their representative in their district. However, at this point, who will die? Who will be tortured and who will be detained is the questioned? What sort of narrative will the government push to forget their vile violence against the civilians and the public in general?
Because of this moment will we really care about if NRM’s Naome Kibaaju or FDC’s Richard Guma. I have a really hard time to digest this. As the end-game of Arua is still playing out, the deaths and all the victims, as so many people are on bond and awaiting trial. Therefore, the Sheema North seems just like a pinch of salt in wounds. As the beatings are not yet even healed. The lack of tolerance and space are being squeezed. Therefore, the authorities could have waited and postponed this.
It is hard to celebrate, and the donated bikes to the public, will be impounded if the NRM looses. Just like it did in Rukungiri. So, the Sheema North should expect it is only given to them, as a token, if the NRM wins. They double down if they loose and we knows this.
Lets just hope that this doesn’t become bloody, hurt more people and that the final days of the By-Election turns as tragic as the whole Arua did. Because no place should become like that. However, the NRM just wants to signal that it costs to stand in their way. That is why SG Lumumba had to talk about staying loyal to the NRM who came with these “gifts”.
We know what they are. The people should know what they are, a small deposit and if they are not getting anything in return, they collect it back. As the constituency was a bad investment.
Let’s pray, but we know that Bosco is a unforgiving man, who calls the opposition by many names. So we just have to prepare for another funeral. Even if these are supposed to be joyful occasions, where people are supposed to do their civic duty of electing their representative to the next-highest office. Peace.