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Uganda: Electoral Commission Statement on Parliamentary and Local Government Councils Elections and By-Elections 2017 (02.08.2017)

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NRM Regime sends the message when they cannot afford elections in the new districts: That they are not important!

There are clear reports that the Electoral Commission doesn’t have the funds for elections in the new districts, which is: “The districts that came into effect on July 1 are Bunyangabu carved out of Kabarole, Namisindwa carved out of Manafwa, Pakwach from Nebbi, Butebo from Pallisa, Rukiga from Kabale and Kyotera from Rakai” (Mwesigwa, 2017). So from these newly created districts does have new Members of Parliament, but does not have local leadership.

This proves the real value of the newly created districts, as the National Resistance Movement pays it no mind and only create it out of political will. Not creating districts for better governance or service delivery. The NRM and the President have been gerrymandering and paying off his people with making new districts. Why I say the NRM and the government doesn’t prioritize real local leadership, since the Electoral Commission had on the 27th June 2017 in a Press Release said this:

The Electoral Commission has appointed Monday 3rd July 2017, as the date for election of Interim District Chairperson in each of the newly created districts of Bunyangabu, Butebo, Kyotera, Namisindwa, Pakwach and Rukiga” (Electoral Commisson, 27.06.2017). Still, that date has been postponed because of lacking funds. Therefore, the interim leadership in the new districts get to stay in power without polls.

It was apparently very easy to create districts and than find suitable people to run them. And done so without any scrutiny, since it is done times ahead before the General Election in 2016. This was done with several districts and made into new government organization. Something the NRM regime has done through the decades.

It is more evident now that the NRM doesn’t consider the chairpersons in the new districts. That the LCV chairmen got elected in in 112 districts. But with the new districts its become 118 districts. Since in the 9th Parliament by August 2015, this was totally 23 new districts, not only the ones active from 1st July 2017. Which now the state cannot afford to have local leadership election. Like the report in August 2015: “Last week, Local Government Minister Adolf Mwesige, presented an amended motion seeking to create 23 new districts spread across four financial years. According to the motion, districts to be created effective July 1, 2016 include Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda. Those to come into effect by July 1, 2017 include Namisindwa, Pakwach, Butebo, Rukiga, Kyotera and Bunyangabu. On the other hand Nabilatuk, Bugweri, Kasanda, Kwania, Kapelebyong and Kikuube districts will become effective July 1, 2018 while Obongi, Kazo, Rwampara, Kitagwenda, Madi Okollo, Kalenga and Kalaki come into effect from July 1, 2019” (The Observer, 2015). Because the State has been able to hold elections in the ones that came into affect in July 1st 2016. These we’re by-election that has gone in favor of the NRM. These being in Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda. So it is now the 6 districts who the state cannot afford to have elections for. Which means that the Republic cannot afford having local government officials.

So the state has carved out new districts, but cannot afford them. It is special that during the next two years there will be 13 more districts. There is already launched 10 districts and only 4 districts has elected leadership through ballots. These are Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda. The rest are without leadership. The 13 districts that is coming, you can wonder if the state can afford them as well? Even if it will be another fiscal year, but there still need extended efforts because the state has established and created districts, that needs offices and councils. These all needs provisions and budgetary discipline to make it happen.

Clearly, the service delivery and the need for the new districts isn’t there, it is all political motivated to pay off loyal NRM cronies and give them titles. That they can hire Resident District Commanders and others who will work directly for the President and the State House. The Electoral Commission has just to issue an election and get the secret ballots. That is the easy thing, but to build the new district and the government organization. The NRM knows this, but the initial factor is if they cannot hold elections there, can they pay for the structure?

It doesn’t seem likely that the districts are made for the best of the community or the government services. More for cronies loyal to the President. Peace.

Reference:

Mwesigwa, Alon – ‘Crisis: No money to run new districts, conduct elections’ (07.07.2017) link: http://observer.ug/news/headlines/53724-crisis-no-money-to-run-new-districts-conduct-elections.html

The Observer – ‘Uganda: Museveni Directs Parliament to Convene Over New Districts’ (25.08.2015) link: http://allafrica.com/stories/201508260319.html

MPS for Presidential Affairs FY 2017/18 proving massive spending on Mzee!

The Ministerial Policy Statement on the Presidential Affairs for the Financial Year of 2017/2018. These are clear of the priorities in the Republic. The Republic are putting as much funds into the State House, which is Ushs. 245 bn and under the Office of Prime Minister in the Development Expenditure Ushs. 245 bn. So there are certain aspects of government priority that isn’t healthy, as both the Office of the President and the State House get Ush. 300 bn in total. But take look at the beautiful priorities of the National Resistance Movement!

Office of the President:

In the FY 2017/18, the total proposed allocation to Office of the President is Ushs 54.268 bn, reflecting a 2.8% increment against the FY 2016/17 approved budget” (GoU, P: 3,2017).

The Committee noted that four (4) districts of Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda came in place in FY 2016/2017. In the FY 2017/2018, Namisindwa, Pakwach, Butebo, Rukiga, Kyotera and Bunyangabo will come into operation. The Committee however noted that additional cost implication of Ushs. 2.63 bn to facilitate 10 RDCs is not within the MTEF ceiling of Office of the President in FY 2017/18. The Committee further observed that facilitation for RDCs to conduct effective monitoring of Government programs is underfunded to the tune of Ushs. 3.0 bn” (GoU, P: 4, 2017)

Internal Security Organization:

The Committee expressed concern without substantial facilitation to Internal Security Organisation, terrorists can successfully accomplish their interests of terrorism and insurgency activities and other forms of organized crimes including politically motivated ones without detection. This has in most cases resulted substantial spending in managing such acts” (GoU, P: 9, 2017).

State House:

In the FY 2017/18, the total proposed allocation to Vote 002 is Ushs 245.567 bn, reflecting a 4.6% reduction against the FY 2016/17 approved budget” (GoU, P: 12, 2017).

External Security Organization:

In the FY 2017/18, the total proposed allocation to Vote 159 is Ushs 31.343 bn, reflecting an increment of 16.4°10 against the FY 2016/17 approved budget largely on account of a 10 % budget cut on consumptive items” (GoU, P: 18, 2017).

Office of the Prime Minister:

The Committee noted that the policy on refugees in Uganda is lacking. The Committee was informed that Office of the Prime Minister is in the process of conducting consultations with stakeholders to validate the Draft Refugee Policy. The Committee observes that in absence of the refugee policy, citizens are not aware of the right places and right engagement for refuges. The Committee undertook on-spot assessment of communities hosting refugees in Adjumani, Yumbe and Kiryandongo Districts and noted that in some instances, refugees have too much freedom and are more privileged at the expense of nationals” (GoU, P: 29, 2017).

10.3.5 Lack of sustainable interventions for Disaster Preparedness

The Committee notes that Office of the Prime Minister has not made any efforts in putting in place sustainable interventions for Disaster Preparedness. In its oversight role, the Committee undertook a field visit to Nakasongola District, which is among the drought prone areas in the Country. The Committee was informed that during peak drought season, about 30 heads of cattle died per day and that the drought season occurs year in year out. The most painful thing to note is that Nakasongola District is surrounded by Lake Kyoga” (GoU, P: 29, 2017).

11.1 VOTE 001 – OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT

Budget Item UShs. (Bn)

(i) Recurrent Expenditure 118,929,091,000

(ii) Development Expenditure 5,216,904,000” (GoU, P: 32, 2017).

11.3 VOTE 003 – OFFICE OF THE PRIME MINISTER

Budget Item (i) Recurrent Expenditure Ushs. 64,786,412,000 bn.

(ii) Development Expenditure Ushs. 245,404,928,000 bn” (GoU, P: 32, 2017)

There are proof of enough lacking resources, lacking policies, even coming from the Office of the Prime Minister, that is the Ministry under Prime Minister Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda, the trusted appointee that was sought to fill the shoes of Amama Mbabazi. Therefore, the government are clearly not planning or having funds to keep the refugees in Uganda. There assistance is coming from donors, the Multi-National Organization and Non-Governmental Organization who apply needed help to the fleeing refugees in Northern Uganda.

We can also see the similar use of Development expenditure under the Office of the Prime Minister and the State House, which is Ushs. 245 bn. This is proving the misuse of funds on the State House, as the development expenditure should be more important than expensive water and all other projects under the State House. As well, as keeping the upkeep of the President. Even as under the Office of the President are alone getting Ushs. 118 bn. Therefore, the whole Presidential Affairs are really not a cheap ride for the Financial Year of 2017/2018.

The are really lot of spending on the President and Prime Minister’s portfolios, but still missing key policies to implement the spending. That is maybe why the State House needed supplementary budget before even getting the vote of the Ministerial Statement. If that isn’t bad planning or even misuse of State Reserves, than who knows! Peace.

Reference:

Government of Uganda (GoU)- ‘SUMMARY REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON PRESIDENTIAL AFFAIRS ON THE MINISTERIAL POLICY STATEMENTS FOR FY 2017/18’ (May 2017)

Opinion: Flabbergasting to know that funds used from Ministry of Works was used to print NRM Manifestos in 2016!

president-museveni-and-first-lady-janet-museveni-at-the-launching-of-the-nrm-manifesito

“Ministry of Works officials reveal to PAC that UGX47m budgeted for the roads fund was used to print NRM manifesto last year” (NBS TV Uganda, 01.03.2017).

The Yellow Movement have no nerve; they have Presidential Handshakes, buying jet-planes for the President, but not money for maintenance. They want to buy helicopters to the Speakers of the Parliament this year. But last year they impressed as well!

Hon. Monica Azuba Ntege, the Minister of the Ministry must feel stupid, as she knows perfectly well that the funds should go to transport or to roads, even gone to the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) development, even to build ports like Bukasa Port on the Lake Victoria.

That this proves something that we all have feared all along, is that the National Resistance Movement are eating of the plate of the public funds when they need. This is if the NRM needs money for gasoline or hiring buses during the campaigns they just take the unallocated salaries for teachers to that. If President Museveni needs more funds to pay musicians for campaigning for him, than going to the function where the allocated taxpayers monies we’re supposed to go.

This shows the lack of transparency and respect of the government funds when the ruling regime and ruling party uses state funds to inner-party campaigning. That NRM and their party organization used Ministry of Works funds to print NRM Manifestos for the General Election of 2016, show lack of governance and allocation procedures. We can question the oversight of the allocation of state funds that is diverted to party work.

The NRM regime is now openly telling to the world that they are misusing the funds and doing in broad daylight, during the plenary sessions on the audit of funds from former financial year of 2015/2016. The world would not be surprised if the NRM used more funds from other ministries to campaign in the recent campaign. Especially knowing that NRM and President Museveni doesn’t seem to have any care with the scrutiny or good-governance. Good governance is apparently a giant issue that will continue be hurt one for regime, because they don’t have the ability or wish to change. Since President Museveni are only focused on his own riches and own wealth, as he is not a civil servant, but his own master who controls the Republic. Peace.  

UPC: Solidarity/Congratulation Message (02.09.2016)

UPC 02.09.2016 P1UPC 02.09.2016 P2

NRM claim victory in recent elections in the new districts; it was expected, but how long can they rule on borrowed time?

NRM30082016

It is just one of these days, where the result of the recent election; to be frank another one of days after the ballot is casted and things are just back to normal. It is just one of these days. Where the news of the National Resistance Movement picking up most of mandates and representatives from the newly created districts in Kibaale, Kagadi, Rubanda Omoro and Kakumiro.

The ones that are surprised that there do exist a voting apathy and low turnouts has lost the plot since the rigging generation under the current administration. As there are clear reports of Pre-Ticked Ballots even in this minor election. Where the good news we are that the Electoral Commission was actually prepared and had some sense of delivering Electoral Material. Though late at some polling stations as 10:40 but still closing the Polling Station at ordinary time, which is an insult to injury.

It was not strange that the Movement got most of the candidate in a race where the locals anticipated bribes to decide their votes. Something the CCEDU clearly saw and reported in the districts. Where the Police and Crime Preventers was guards at the Polling Stations, but the good news was no clear violence during the election. The only one where the certain individuals where caught planning to put fire on one radio-station. While it were reports that other Radio Stations had focus on spreading the news of the Movement and let the others, just run astray. This is a proof of malpractice and maladministration as the ruling regime does not care about the freedoms of assembly of the fellow citizens.

Together with FDC Mobilisers who tailgated NRM initiators who we’re bribing locals to vote for them and in the end ended up serving time in jail for questioning the behaviour of the Movement. This proves that the fate is already sealed and that the election is not a necessary arrangement for picking leaders since the Movement have already done it for you. The FDC did not get any mandate, but still had more campaigns that the other parties who really put their soul into the campaign of Omoro, where the NRM captured the representative. In all the new districts all but one person outside the Movement got a position and that was an Independent Candidate. The system obviously made ready for this kind of outcome. As the registered leaders of other parties where in Omoro and the contests as the newly formed districts where the function was clearly a horserace to bribe the men and woman to give them vote and let them be for the rest of the term.

The Forum for Democratic Change lost this one, but the contest of bribing; the Movement won it. Certainly, the Uganda People’s Congress and Democratic Party must feel hurt by losing Omoro District to the Movement, but their way of bamboozling opposition continues and it is a reason why Hon. Jacob Oulanyah still is an MP and Deputy Speaker in the 10th Parliament. Not because of his ethics, but because of the Movements acts to stay in Power.

The initial outcome was set from the get-go. The reality is the same as yesterday. The Movement the shallow creature it is ask Selah. Sorry, ask Sevo. Not ask Dr. Ruhakana Ruganda and not Hon. Edward Ssekandi. Remember ask Selah, he can answer why the Movement in shallow in the chambers of the hotel he is lodged in eating on government salaries.

It is reasons why the elections in the newly created districts ended this way; the signs in the stars and moons was smiling about it. At least what the cow farmer is concerned. The Movement continues to linger on and cheat their way to happiness and further acts that are more corrupt and behaviour into oblivion. Still, they wonder why there are voter apathy and uncertainty of value of their ballot unless they get some shillings to buy soap or millet.

The Movement can celebrate these wins like a victory of their glorious movement who is a people’s movement, as they did with the double celebration at Kololo after both the ballots, the rigging and the Supreme Court validate the Movement and its leadership yet again. But the reality is that is on borrowed time as the apathy proves the dissolution of the current leadership. The tiredness and current instability of the ones above. The silence and contempt will surface, but when it boil over is not something you can say.

The only way for this to end well is if the apathy turns into pleasure of the current status quo and that the people, the citizens are contempt with keeping the militarized Movement there. If not, then there are something else brewing; that is something Sevo and Selah doesn’t want hear. They might swallowed and paid through the hurdles for this one. Made it peaceful and organized it to an extent well, but the tarnished reputation, the violent Police Force and the abuses cannot last forever. You cannot keep your opposition in prison and still legitimize your rule. Just like the wise men of Nakawa in Kampala these days tries to defend.

The Movement and their supporters might believe they won this one and got it. But they didn’t. They bribed it and took it. They didn’t win it. They didn’t because it wasn’t rhetoric or policies that won, but who pays who for their vote. If the locals expect always to be paid for their vote, then the coffers won’t sore but be tore. As proven with the recent expensive campaign trail of Mzee and the empty bank accounts of the State House right before the opening of the 10th Parliament.

So enjoy your victories and pleasures of emptiness as the borrowed time and for every minute counting the expected payback will come. How and when is not up to me to say, but the grave danger of missteps and loosen control will widen the spectrum and the disfranchised citizens might want their justice back. Peace.

Final Election Observation Statement in Kakumiro, Kibaale, Kagadi, Rubanda and Omoro Districts (30.08.2016)

Kagadi 29.08.2016

The Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) was launched on 19th August 2009. CCEDU is a broad coalition that brings together over 850 like-minded civil society organizations and over 25,000 individuals to advocate for electoral democracy in Uganda. The CCEDU secretariat is hosted by the Foundation for Human Rights Initiative (FHRI). CCEDU’s vision is to realize a Uganda where the principles and practices of electoral democracy are upheld. Its mission is to advance integrity and citizen participation in Uganda’s electoral process. CCEDU carries out its work in all districts and regions of Uganda. Since its establishment, CCEDU has been a leading player in advocacy for electoral reforms, observation of general and by-elections and civic/voter education campaigns.

CCEDU has a special mandate to observe Elections in conformity with the relevant international instruments governing election observation and the Constitution and National Laws of the Republic of Uganda.[1]

This statement presents the overall observations of the conduct of Election Day process of the CCEDU Election Observation Mission in the five districts.

 Summary

CCEDU finds that the Election Day processes were relatively peaceful and better organized from an administration perspective. Polling officials knew polling day procedures and generally followed the legal provisions on opening of the polling station, set up, voting, closing and counting. However, there were some challenges during the polling process notably some voters who were not permitted to vote. Additionally, although the election procedures allow for assisted voting, CCEDU noted cases of voters who were assisted to vote in many of the polling stations observed.

Set Up and opening

 Although many polling stations opened after 7am, the polling officials generally followed the laid out procedures for opening and set up. Additionally, the few incidents of missing materials mainly indelible ink were also resolved.

Voting

During the voting process, polling officials at most polling stations followed procedures and the Biometric Voter Verification System (BVVS) relatively functioned well.
In 84 of 100 polling stations observed, voters were checked for ink before receiving a ballot.

  • All polling stations observed had the BVVS. In 84 of 100 polling stations observed the BVVS functioned properly. Among the 16 that malfunctioned, 10 were fixed and 3 were replaced.
  • Polling officials instructed voters on voting procedures in 89 of the 100 polling stations observed
  • In 86 of the 100 polling stations observed, voters were able to vote in secret.
  • In 66 of the 100 polling stations observed, there were no unauthorized personnel present inside the polling station. However, police and crime preventers were present in 19 of polling stations.
  • High numbers of voters were assisted to vote. In 78 of the 100 polling stations observed some (1 – 14) voters were assisted to vote. In 6 of the polling stations observed more than 15 voters were assisted to vote. Unidentified people assisted voters in 67 of the 100 polling stations observed, while election officials and party agents assisted voters in 16 and 14 of the polling stations respectively contrary to the law.

Chart 1 representing number of voters assisted to vote based on data from 100 polling stations observed by CCEDU

District Polling Stations with CCEDU Observers Polling stations with between 1-14 voters assisted to Vote
Kagadi 33 28
Kakumiro 22 16
Kibaale 12 9
Omoro 14 11
Rubanda 19 14

NRM party agents were present in all the 5 districts (in 99 of the 100 polling stations observed), Independent candidates agents present in Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda (in 85 of the 100 polling stations observed) and FDC party agents present in Kagadi, Kibaale, Omoro and Rubanda (in 78 polling stations observed.) However UPC, DP and PP party agents presence is limited to Omoro district.

  • In 84 of the 100 polling stations observed, all voters in queue by 4pm were able to vote.

Omoro Election 2016

Counting and Declaration of Results

  •     In 99 of the 100 polling stations, polling officials opened the ballot box and sorted ballots in full view of the candidates’ agents.
  • 62 of polling stations did not have unauthorized personnel present during counting. However, 23 of polling stations observed had police present and 22 of polling stations had crime preventers present.
  • Party agents are useful in an election because they can deter fraud especially if they are vigilant and loyal to their candidate/party. During counting NRM party agents were present in all the 5 districts (in 98 of the 100 polling stations observed), Independent candidates agents present in Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda (in 82 of the 100 polling stations observed) and FDC party agents present in Kagadi, Kibaale, Omoro and Rubanda (in 74 polling stations observed.) However UPC and DP presence is limited to Omoro district. PPP party agents were not present during counting in any district.
  • Where party agents of NRM were present, their agents signed the Declaration of Results form in 94 of 100 polling stations. They refused to sign in 5 of the 100 polling stations observed.
  • Where agents of FDC were present, their agents signed the Declaration of Results form in 72 of 100 polling stations. Where FDC agents were present, they refused to sign in 4 of the 100 polling stations observed.
  • Where party agents of UPC were present, their agents signed the Declaration of Results form in 15 of 100 polling stations. They refused to sign in 0 of the 100 polling stations observed.
  • Where party agents of DP were present, their agents signed the Declaration of Results form in 15 of 100 polling stations. They refused to sign in 2 of the 100 polling stations observed.
  • Where party agents of PPP were present, their agents signed the Declaration of Results form in 6 of 100 polling stations. They refused to sign in 0 of the 100 polling stations observed.
  • Where party agents of independent candidates were present, their agents signed the Declaration of Results form in 79 of 100 polling stations. They refused to sign in 8 of the 100 polling stations observed.
  • Election results were posted publicly at 86 of the 100 polling stations observed and in all the polling station observed the presiding officer sealed a copy of the DR form in the tamper evident envelope for transmission to the Returning officer.

Critical Incident Reports

CCEDU received 22 critical incidents and verified 17. The highest number of incidents reported from Rubanda (7) and Kakumiro (6) Kagadi (2) and Omoro (1) had the least number of incidents reported.

  • Vote buying/voter bribery was the most reported incidents in Rubanda, Omoro and Kakumiro
  • Incidents of violence including disruption of voting were the second most reported in Kakumiro, Omoro and Kagadi
  • Incidents of unauthorized persons assisting others to vote were the third most reported critical incidents reported in Kakumiro.
  • In Rubanda there was also a case of impersonation of voters reported.
  • In Omoro voting ended at 5:00pm but voting materials from the polling stations arrived at the tally centre at 10:40pm.

Conclusion

Despite the fact that there were a few incidents of violence reported, CCEDU applauds voters in Kagadi, Kakumiro, Kibaale, Omoro and Rubanda for maintaining peace and calm during the elections. However, CCEDU is concerned that voters are increasingly demanding for bribes from candidates which is a point of concern in our electoral processes. CCEDU urges voters to desist from demanding for bribes and urges candidates to desist from buying voters.

CCEDU remains committed to improving the integrity of electoral processes in Uganda.

For God and my country.

Preliminary Election Observation Statement in Kakumiro, Kibaale, Kagadi, Rubanda and Omoro Districts (29.08.2016)

Kagadi 29.08.2016

The Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) was launched on 19th August 2009. CCEDU is a broad coalition that brings together over 850 like-minded civil society organizations and over 25,000 individuals to advocate for electoral democracy in Uganda. The CCEDU secretariat is hosted by the Foundation for Human Rights Initiative (FHRI). CCEDU’s vision is to realize a Uganda where the principles and practices of electoral democracy are upheld. Its mission is to advance integrity and citizen participation in Uganda’s electoral process. CCEDU carries out its work in all districts and regions of Uganda. Since its establishment, CCEDU has been a leading player in advocacy for electoral reforms, observation of general and by-elections and civic/voter education campaigns.
CCEDU has a special mandate to observe Elections in conformity with the relevant international instruments governing election observation and the Constitution and National Laws of the Republic of Uganda
This statement presents the preliminary observations on the opening and setup process of the CCEDU Election Observation Mission in the five districts. CCEDU share a more detailed report with once more information has been received from our observers.

SUMMARY

In August 2015, government approved the creation of new districts. Subsequently, the EC, on 30 June 2016, announced the programme for Parliamentary and Local Government Councils election in five of the newly created districts namely Kakumiro and Kagadi curved out of Kibaale district; Rubanda curved out of present day Kabale district and Omoro curved out of present day Gulu district. The offices for election are: District Woman Member of Parliament, Local Council V chairpersons and Youth representative.
In line with its mission to enhance integrity, transparency and active citizen participation in Uganda’s electoral processes, CCEDU commissioned an election observation mission in the five (5) districts, to observe the pre-election, Election Day and post-election periods.
CCEDU has deployed 100 polling station observers distributed proportionally in all the 49 sub counties that make up the five districts. These have been stationed across all the 49 sub counties to observe and report on the Election Day processes at the polling stations. (See Annex of CCEDU Observer Distribution in the 5 districts). These 100 observers are supported by 5 district supervisors, one in each district. Additionally CCEDU members and staff of CCEDU secretariat are on ground supplementing reports from the stationary observers.

PRELIMINARY ELECTION DAY FINDINGS

The conduct of the elections was guided by the 1995 Constitution of Uganda, the Parliamentary Elections Act 2005, the Local Government Act 1997 as amended and the Electoral Commission Act 1997.

This statement is based on observer reports and incidents filed by all the 100 observers deployed in the 5 districts as at 11:40 am focusing on the opening and setup process.

Kibaale District 29.08.2016

Findings on Set-up and Opening Process:

On the opening and set up process, CCEDU has observed the following:

• Polling officials had arrived only in 28 polling stations of the 100 polling stations by 6:30am. Although Omoro had a higher presence of polling officials, on the contrary, polling officials in Kakumiro, Kagadi, Kibaale and Rubanda districts were not present at polling stations by 6:30 which affected the opening of most polling stations.

• The Presidential and Parliamentary Elections Acts as amended provide for polling to begin at 7:00am and end at 4:00pm. By 7:00am, only 10 polling stations out of the 100 polling stations observed in the five districts had opened. Although most of the polling stations (72 of 100 polling stations) observed had opened by 8:00am. 27 polling stations opened after 8:30am.

• Although 91 of 100 polling stations observed had all strategic materials, 5 polling stations in Kagadi, Kakumiro and Rubanda were missing indelible ink and 1 polling station in Rubanda was missing the voter register.

• In line with Objective VI of the national objectives and directive principles of state policy, which provides for gender balance in all government institutions, out of the 4 polling officials in the 100 polling stations observed, at least 2 of polling officials were women.

• In most of the polling stations observed, polling officials followed procedure by observing the presence of at least 5 registered voters in 95 of the 100 polling stations observed. Additionally, polling officials in 95 of the 100 polling stations observed displayed ballot boxes to be empty before voting commenced observed and in 93 of 100 polling stations observed polling officials followed the set procedure of sealing ballot boxes before voting commenced.

• CCEDU observers have also noted the presence of party agents across all districts. NRM party agents were present in all the 5 districts (in 96 of the 100 polling stations observed), Independent candidates agents present in Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda (in 75 of the 100 polling stations observed) and FDC party agents present in Kagadi, Kibaale, Omoro and Rubanda (in 58 polling stations observed.) However UPC, DP and PP party agents presence is limited to Omoro district.
Critical Incidents:

The following critical incidents have been reported and confirmed by CCEDU observers between 7:00am and 11:40am:

• Biometric Voter verification systems malfunctioned in Kibaale District, Buyanja County, and Matale A Sub-county and at Nkooko B polling station, Bugangaizi East County, Kakumiro District.
Voter bribery has been reported in Bubare C polling station, Rubanda county East in Rubanda District.
• A fight between agents of an NRM candidate and an agent of an Independent candidate were reported and confirmed at Birembo A Sub-county, Bugangaizi West County in Kakumiro District.
• In Kyanyi Polling station, polling station code 01 in Nyamarinda Sub-county, Kibaale district, it was observed that 4 people known to be deceased had their names ticked in the voter’s register as though the deceased had voted.
Kakumiro community radio was reported to have been campaigning for an NRM candidate in Kakumiro town council, Kakumiro district.
• Agents of independent candidates were said to have manhandled an agent for the NRM candidate at Kakindo sub-county, Bugangaizi West county, Kakumiro district.

Omoro Election 2016
Conclusion

CCEDU remains committed to objectively observing and reporting on the elections as they unfold in the five districts. We shall provide a comprehensive statement on the polling and closing, counting and tabulation processes tomorrow August 30 at 10:00am.

We urge voters to remain peaceful and come out in large numbers to exercise their right to vote.

For God and my country.

Reports from the Elections in the newly formed districts Kagadi, Kakumiro, Rubanda, Omoro and Kibaale!

Boda Boda Elections

“Elections in the new districts have so far been peaceful.” Dr Livingstone Sewanyana

To get the rest of left seats in Parliament and Local Government are for grabs in the newly formed districts of Rubanda, Kagadi, Kakumiro and Omoro. So the stakes are high, even the Electoral Commission have again delivered Electoral Material late at the dozen polling stations in the districts. The famous ways of Boda-Boda’s are the common delivery method in the early morning as the stations are set up and made ready. But as the rest of the General Election this year, there been issues of bribery, pre-ticked ballots and some occurring incidents of even burning down a radio station. Take a look!

Good News:

“Police says they have not registered any clashes in the ongoing elections in the five newly created districts” (933 KFM, 2015). This counter’s the reports and worries that Dr. Badru Kiggundu of Electoral Commission claimed before the elections that they we’re worried about violence during the election. Seem, like the EC Engineer we’re wrong on that point.

Kagadi 29.08.2016

From Kagadi there are already reported that the National Resistance Movement have delivered pre-ticked ballots. “In police cells at Kagadi is Arinaitwe Ismail over Arson attempt. OC Kagadi police station says Arinaitwe tried to burn a radio station” (Capital FM Uganda, 2016). So there is a special situation in the district for the NRM Flagbearer Steven Kasingbwe, Forum for Democratic Change candidate Peter Byahangire and Independent Candidate Yosiya Ndibwami.

In one polling station in Kakumiro district there been reported low turnout as well at Kabworo polling station in Kakumiro town council. In the district where you have to choose between Apuli Ssemanda of NRM and Independent Candidate Lawrence Bazala, so it will be interesting to see who becomes the elected in the newly created district. A problem at some of the Polling Stations is that people are missing from the Electoral Register. So Voters sent away even if they we’re supposed to vote in Kakumiro. Also reported this: “Fight between agents of an NRM candidate and an agent of an Independent candidate were reported and confirmed at Birembo Sub-county, Kakumiro” (…) “Kakumiro community radio was reported to have been campaigning for an NRM candidate” (CCEDU, 2016).

In Rubanda district this we’re reported: “Distribution of polling materials to the 32 polling stations within Bubaare subcounty Rubanda districts begins at 6:35am!” and this happen on Boda-Boda’s in the district. So at some at the polling stations the Election material came late. “At Kacerere 5 Polling Station, Rubanda, Voters are outside waiting for a candidate(s) who will pay them money for their vote” (…) “Many of those we have talked to are unwilling to go and vote before they are paid. A vote is going for, between UGX 500 and 2,000” (NTV Uganda, 2016). “The arrest was executed by Dannie Elly Ecwatu the Officer in charge of Muko Police Station” (…) “This followed a tip-off by residents of Muko. Arigye recorded a statement at Muko Police Station with case reference number 07/29/208/16 The suspect is said to be a campaign agent of the independent District Woman MP candidate,  Hilda Kabarungi” (New Vision, 29.08.2016). Also in Rubanda we’re FDC MP Hon. Francis Mwijuke: “Just to be sure. Tight marking. No taking chances. Here in the new district of Rubanda- Kabale monitoring the polling for LC5 chairman and the district woman MP” (Mwijuke, 2016). The CCEDU said this about the election in Rubanda: “5 polling stations in Kagadi, Kakumiro and Rubanda were missing indelible ink and 1 polling station in Rubanda was missing voter register” (CCEDU, 2016).

Omoro Election 2016

In Omoro the highly contested by-election as the Democratic Party, Uganda People’s Congress, National Resistance Movement and Forum for Democratic Change candidates who contest for the single positions in this elections. Today’s bigshot we’re when DPs Norbert Mao went out to stamp out his vote today at Labongologo Polling Station, where he voted for Omoro Woman MP and District Chairperson.

Kibaale District 29.08.2016

From Kibaale district:

The FDC candidate in Kibaale District Woman MP race, Counsel Proscovia Kunihira has Just Cast her vote . There Is largely a Poor turn up of voters in Kibaale and other 4 Districts where the élection Is taking place. But, we have total confidence Our candidate Will win This race and paint Kibaale and Bunyoro” (Mulindwa Walid Lubega, 2016). Also some technical difficulties as the “BVS malfunctioned in Kibaale District, Buyanja County, and Matale A Sub-county and at Nkooko B p-station” (…) “In Kibaale district, 4 people known to be deceased had their names ticked in voter’s register as though the deceased had voted” (CCEDU, 2016).

CCEDU statement in general:

“NRM prescence the most prevalent, FDC had in Kigadi, Kabale, Omoro, and Rubanda, UPC, DP only noted in Omoro. This concerns us” (…) “By 7:00am, only 10 polling stations out of the 100 polling stations observed in the five districts had opened” (CCEDU, 2016).

“MP’s want 150m for cars, but shouldn’t Government prioritise LC1 Elections above all?” Dr Livingstone Sewanyana

What Might happen:

So now it just to see how the Election will be tallied and the results will come. If there will be incidents like the NRM Primaries or even Presidential Election earlies this year where Pre-Ticked Ballots are coming from the sheds, Police Stations and from Candidates all over the place. Wouldn’t be surprised if the Tally Centre’s get raided by a disgruntled candidate or even comes with security forces to clear the result in the name of the candidate.

Let’s hope it gets totally free and fair, but if any indication and trust between the electorate, let’s say the citizens and the Electoral Commission as the sham and rigging we’re evident during last election. So the low-turnout now is a continuation of the low turnout at the Local Councilor Elections during the latest polls. So therefore the end-game will make this interesting as the proof of systematic malfunction might come again. Peace.    

Uganda: Adm72/01 – Final Preparations for Parliamentary and Local Government Councils Elections in Newly-Created Districts (25.08.2016)

EC 25.08.2016 P1EC 25.08.2016 P2EC 25.08.2016 P3EC 25.08.2016 P5

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