Uganda Peoples Congress (UPC) – Old Challenges Continue to Pull Our Contry Backwards (02.11.2022)

Citizens Coalition for Improved Service Delivery in West Nile: Follow up action points from the meeting on 1st September 2022 on the status of electricity in West Nile (03.10.2022)

Uganda: Kisembo Ronex Tendo, former EALA MP Candidate letter to President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni – Re: Grievances Arising from the Recently Concluded Elections for Uganda’s Representatives in the 5th East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) – (03.10.2022)

EALA Elections: NRM wins 8 out of 9 [and DP get the final seat]

UPDATE: The elected EALA representatives and the votes attained.

Akol Rose Okullu 422

Namara Denis 415

Kakooza James 405

Odongo George Stephen 403

Paul Mwasa 401

Kadogo Babirye Veronica 383

Mugenyi Mary 367

Amongin Jacquiline 338

Siranda Gerald 233” (NilePost, 29.09.2022).

My prediction got hit with one seat in the East African Legislation Assembly (EALA) Members of Parliament (MP). The one I thought was a go was the Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) Fred Ebil. He didn’t get his seat and the UPC lost their seat in the EALA this period. Now, there is only National Resistance Movement (NRM) and the Democratic Party (DP) who has EALA MPs in the 5th Assembly.

Today, the NRM got their 6 candidates, which was anticipated. They got in addition two more “independent” candidates. So, in the numbers they got 8 out of 9. Jacqueline Amongin is a member of the NRM and a Pan African Parliament (PAP) Member too. So, she has represented Uganda on a NRM ticket already. Now she ran as an “independent” but everyone should know that she is associated and a member of the NRM.

The second “independent” Babirye Veronica Kadogo was the Woman Representative in the 10th Parliament for the NRM in Buyende District. She lost her re-election bid in the General Election in 2021. She ran as an “independent” but certainly is connected to the NRM as well. To think otherwise is naive at this point.

That’s why it’s only Gerald Siranda who is from another party, the DP. The DP who had this in their agreement with the NRM. The DP-NRM Agreement had this stipulation and Siranda takes over the seat after two terms for Mbidde. Therefore, the DP gets a seat and an EALA MP.

While we saw a boycott from the National Unity Platform (NUP). The Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) had a candidate that was bound to loose. Justice Forum (JEEMA) also lost, which was also scheduled to happen, as it is associated with the NUP. However, the shocker was that UPC lost their seat and didn’t get Ebil elected. Especially, since the NRM was supposed to back the UPC with this seat, but that was hallow.

The opposition didn’t really loose much. They had nothing to get to begin with. The NRM was bound for a pyrrhic victory, but today was just a painful exercise. The Speaker decided to have an early poll before the deliberations in the plenary session. This is creating the possibility for “pre-ticked ballots” and open rigging. Which is just foolish, because the NRM got the majority in the 11th Parliament and this would be a walkover.

The ones that should feel betrayed is the UPC. They are surely not valued and isn’t getting real support. That is the party which has made agreements with the NRM. Now, their dialogue and such isn’t considered. That is saying something. We can see that Mao and DP got their way. However, the UPC was kicked out by NRM leaning “independent’s”. Peace.

Opinion: The IPOD is a lost cause

The Interparty Organisation for Dialogue (IPOD) who has gotten major funding from Democratic Government Facility (DGF) and Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD). DGF is bound to only last a few more months until December 2022. While NIMD has ceased funding after IPOD has failed to get all parties to sign a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The lasted MoU lasted until February 2022.

Now in September 2022 the IPOD Secretariat might feel at a loss. The ideal of IPOD might seem positive and worthwhile. Nevertheless, the results and the political forum has been more a sideshow than actually being fruitful. The majority party and ruling regime, National Resistance Movement (NRM) has used it more to poach the opposition and have publicity stunts. While the opposition like Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) and National Unity Platform (NUP) haven’t seen any sort of dialogue or proper platform to make difference. That’s why they rather distance themselves from it.

The IPOD was maybe made with the best interest in 2010. NIMD and DGF funded the organization to have a place and possibility to meet. IPOD could have been a safe space for the political parties, but we all know this haven’t been in the interests of the Head of State or the NRM. The NRM wants to either intimidate, strike or corrupt their opposition. That’s why President Museveni has himself promised to destroy and get rid of all opposition.

Now in 2022 and after 12 years of IPOD. The NRM is losing one of the few places where Museveni could actually meet the real opposition. Not the “opposition” who is already leaning towards him or co-operating with him. No, the ones defying him or wanting to remove him isn’t now a part of the IPOD.

That NIMD is saying it won’t fund IPOD before NUP and FDC joins is a failure. The parties themselves has decide. They have seen the works of IPOD and what it has “achieved”. The organization don’t have that much to show for it. This is why they cannot even write an MoU, which they cannot agree upon.

The NRM might feel like this is a “victory”. They can point at NUP and FDC. However, that is a very hallow “victory”. The FDC and NUP has done this for various of reasons, but it is clear that the NRM isn’t an honest actor. That’s why activists, candidates and associates connected to the NUP or FDC are either kept incommunicado, arrested or even extra judicially killed. The authorities are monitoring the opposition more than they look into crooks. Therefore, the political prisoners and prisoners of conscience is a well-known phenomenon in the Republic. That’s all because of their affiliation and who they are associated with.

If the NRM really wanted IPOD to work. They would have properly invested in it and not only used it for photo-ops ahead of polls and elections. While also using it more directly to create positive headlines Nevertheless, NIMD and DGF maybe want more for their coins. They want them to actually have inclusive dialogue and talks in a political forum. That sort of thing seems like a thing of the past.

It is not the fault of NUP or the FDC for the end of IPOD. The killer of IPOD is Museveni. Like everyone else it goes back to him. It is his choices and orders, which are reflected here. He is getting his will and certainly not … get a free lunch. IPOD is only destroyed and losing value, as there are no real progress or talks of substance. When an organization like IPOD becomes sub-standard forum and losing all value.

President Museveni cannot be happy with this, because this just shows how flawed his multi-party democracy is. When the one forum he had where all elected parties could meet and talk is now ceasing to operate. The funding of this organization is stopped. Because, FDC and NUP isn’t accepting the conditions of the current MoU. That’s a failure and lacking the general understanding of what it should be.

If Museveni wanted this… things would have been different. Nevertheless, expect the NRM to deflect it or blame the parties for not signing on. Because, why should they sign on to something… when it gives them nothing and only legitimizing the regime. IPOD only gives political currency to the NRM without giving the other parties anything worthwhile. The others are just getting an opportunity to see Museveni close by and be there in his presence. That’s a futile enterprise and if the NIMD see that is an asset. They should just continue to pursuit it. However, it isn’t the product that its portrayed on the tin. It is something else and the ones dismissing it has all the reasons to do so. Peace.

Opinion: The EALA MPs race is already finished

The ones expecting any sort of shocks or sudden changes in the East African Legislative Assembly Members of Parliament (MP) race will be in a dire loss. The EALA MP race which is already scheduled will most likely be a settled affair already.

It is the MPs that elects them and the majority will go to the National Resistance Movement (NRM). The NRM has already 6 candidates or Flag-Bearers and you should expect all of them to be settled in. The Democratic Party (DP) will get one MP as that was signed off in the DP-NRM agreement, which was signed of earlier in the year. That means 6 of the 9 slots is already taken. Further, the Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) should also get a candidate in for their loyalty and working relationship with NRM. That means 8 of the 9 MPs are already elected without much say. The last will be to a NRM leaning Independent and a “vetted” one like that. This is what you should expect and anything else would be weird at this point.

The NRM will have the majority and that is reflected in the NRM Caucus with their 6 Candidates. This is an easy pick and securing plum-jobs to former MPs and Ministers who has lost out. That’s why the EALA is a nice place for them to be put. When there is no parastatal or government entities to get appointed into. Therefore, the EALA is a well fitting place to do so.

The others are giving favourable and friendly parties of the Parliament a “shout-out” or “props” for their loyalty. They are getting a EALA MP slot and that’s why its easy to see the 6+2 or 8, which is al but missing 1 of the EALA MPs.

That Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) is fielding a flag-bearer is futile. The same can be said about whoever the National Unity Platform (NUP) would pick or have in this role. The Justice Forum (JEEMA) has also a flag-bearer, but that person will not go nowhere either. As the JEEMA has been an ally of the People Power and the NUP. So, with that in mind these parties candidates will go nowhere. There is no way that the majority of the Parliament will give them way. They are really wasting their time and only playing into the procedural games of the state. Yes, they have a right to have a flag-bearer or a EALA MP candidate, but it’s totally pointless. The opposition could have the best man or woman. They could have the incarnated saviour of the planet and all souls. That person still wouldn’t have a chance, because the NRM has decided and there is no turning back.

The FDC, NUP and JEEMA has no chance here. They should just give up. The DP and UPC will get the other spots. There is little chances for the independent candidates in this race, if any. Yes there is a talk of 15 MP candidates, but as long as you don’t have suction or pre-arranged agreements. These shouldn’t expect much. They are fillers on a paper or if even that…

The ones believing this will be free and fair elections. I hate to say it’s partly sealed already. The only last seat is what is unknown. While that one will most likely go to a NRM leaning Independent and someone in favour of the NRM without being on it’s ticket. That meaning all of the 9 of 9 EALA MPs.

The ones thinking the FDC, NUP or JEEMA has a shot at this… well, I cannot see it happening. It isn’t like the NRM or the ones in power has allowed that before. No, they rather see their own there and no one else. The only reason why UPC and DP has a chance, is because of their working arrangements with the NRM. That’s why they are getting favour and office. Not because of their representation or the will of the people. No, it’s because of ceremonial reasons between the NRM and their allies. There is nothing else too this. Peace.

Bukimbiri County By-Election: Return Form for Transmission of Results (11.08.2022)

Updates from Gogonyo County and Bukimbiri County By-Elections

Today is the day of the polls in the by-elections that is running simultaneously. Gogonyo County in Pallisa district is sort of over before the polls. As there are no real opposition or candidates against the National Resistance Movement (NRM) Flag-Bearer. This is why the real score is on the Bukimbiri County By-Elections in Kisoro district.

The Gogonyo County has had low voter turnout and it’s really an uninteresting affair. The only bothersome thing is that the Electoral Commission didn’t change the ballots after the withdrawal of candidates. So, the Polling agents has to enlighten the voters about if they vote for any of the candidates who pulled out. Their ballots becomes invalided one and will be counted as a spoilt one. Instead of casting a vote that really matters…

In Bukimbiri County is a whole other ball-game. There is already reports of abductions and arrests of the polling agents of the independent candidate, Asigaro Turyagendya. They are now detained at various of police stations. In addition to that… A team led by the Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja, Minister Sarah Mateke and Moses Kamuntu is traversing the county arresting the polling agents and supporters of Asigaro Turyagendya. So, the acts of Soroti East has come to Kisoro for sure.

It is also reported: “Voters in Bukimbiri County By-election are being given between 2000 and 5000 Ugandan shillings to vote either Asigario Turyagenda (independent) or Eddie Kwizera (NRM). This has led to physical fights” (Voice of Muhabura FM, 11.08.2022).

The amount of voters in Bukimbiri is said to be moderate. While drones and heavy security detail in the district. As reported earlier there are alleged voting bribery in the district. However, it is also stated that there have been ballot stuffing going on in Nyanamo Town Council. The source for this was Julius Nkunda from the Voice of Muhabura FM.

We can assess the circumstances here and the outcome is most likely a resounding victory for the NRM. Not because they have the best candidates or the flag-bearers. No, because they have rigged the elections and ensured safe-landing for their anointed ones. They have invested, intimidated and bribed to make it happen. It is just formalities and awaiting the Return Form for Transmission of Results.

Derrick Orone (Gogonyo County) and Eddie Kwizera (Bukimbiri County) is scheduled to be sworn-in and be the next MPs of the 11th Parliament. To think otherwise and naive. This is why the population isn’t eager to show up or participate. Because, everyone knows the drill and it’s close to pointless or derivative at this point. When everyone knows what will go down and who will be announced.

The rest is just publicity, smack-daddy posturing and open blindfolding of the population. Hoping they don’t understand the gimmicks and the games. These weren’t elected MPs, but selected ones. The NRM didn’t need to do much, but they did enough to secure the poll position. That’s very obvious. Yet, another few hallow “victories” for the Movement.

It can celebrate, but everyone knows what’s up and the reality will sooner or later hit them. They cannot do this forever and the public will not accept either. They are made fools off and everyone knows. Peace.

Opinion: Mutabazi only thinks about his own needs…

Joshua Mutabazi whose candidature for Bukimbiri County (Kisoro) seat was withdrawn by his party, NUP in favor of FDC candidate James Owebeyi has crossed to NRM” (NTV Uganda, 10.08.2022).

It wasn’t long ago that the National Unity Platform (NUP) withdrew their candidate in the up-coming by-election in Bukimbiri county in Kisoro district. It is just mere days since the effects of the Unity Statement came into affect and made the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) the “sole” candidate of the opposition in the by-election. However, as things are turning, the words of the 19 year old student surely turned bitter.

The not so seasoned politician who showed finesse character. Has had a change of heart. We don’t know what swayed him or what the National Resistance Movement (NRM) offered the young man. Whatever it was… it wasn’t serving the nation or the struggle for liberation. No it was most likely for his own needs and not what the country needed.

Just read his statement as he withdrew his candidacy just the other day…

Joshua Mutabazi statement:

But if, its for the people, but if it was for liberation, but had it been for us then why wait long. We cant keep claiming condemning and consoling. I choose to bridge the struggle but most importantly draw lines between what one needs and what the country needs. What the country needed a decade back was our leaders to be one, we are late. Its my turn, I wont delay therefore announce my withdrawal from the parliamentary seat by-election of the latter mentioned jurisdiction in favor and full support for united struggle. As the country’s need to have united forces of Change ages daily, I and my party decided to take it upon ourselves. If you have ever experienced injustice and by the ungodliness, then you are a candidate to stand against the same. “Do you want to stand out? Then step down. Be a servant. If you puff yourself up, you’ll get the wind knocked out of you. But if you’re content to simply be yourself, your life will count for plenty. Matthew 23:11-12-11-12 MSG If you are unwilling to make an early sacrifice in life, you’ll be beggars and slaves to the men who did” (Joshua Mutabazi – STATEMENT ON MY WITHDRAWAL FROM THE BUKIMBIRI COUNTY PARLIAMENT SEAT BY-ELECTION, 06.08.2022).

The young man knew perfectly well the deal and what sort of struggle it is out there. The path that his chosen is a road for himself. That is with whatever cherries or dealings the NRM has offered. This is short-term benefits, but in the long-run… his not useful or anything of value for the NRM. No, his just another bought cadre who they were able to corrupt ahead of a by-election. He will be useful as Ashburg Katto or anyone else taken from the NUP. The associates of Bobi Wine who turned the other way.

Mutabazi haven’t even carried himself in a whole campaign. He did the right thing and said the words that was wisely written in the statement. As the party in their efforts of solidarity and planned joint-ventures had to drop-out of certain races to show unified front against the NRM. That’s just a mere fact and Mutabazi isn’t the only one who had to withdraw and won’t be the last either. Especially, if the parties continues with this practice and belief of joint-campaigning to show a vast difference from the NRM.

Mutabazi is unwillingly to sacrifice and will become a beggar or a slave to the system. That’s the choice he made… when he decided not to follow the struggle, but took a choice for his own ends. The young man is in his rights to do so, but he abandoned the struggle and the life of sacrifices. He has chosen the life of cronyism and becoming corrupted by the regime itself. That’s why he gave up on trying to be part of change, but instead joining with the status quo. It is tragic, but that’s the path he has chosen.

When you have opened this door, there is no turning back. People know what you do and who you are. You weren’t the man you made to believe. Instead you sold out and that will forever be a stain on your name. That’s the choice he made and now he has to deal with it. Peace.

Bukimbiri County By-Election: The NRM is ready to repeat what they did in Soroti East…

We’re very ready to gain that victory in all the remaining by-elections in Gogonyo, and Bukimbiri. Our teams are already on the ground and we hope to repeat what we did in Soroti,” NRM party EC boss, Dr. Tanga Odoi said” (The New Vision, 05.08.2022).

The ones that believes the two by-elections scheduled for 11th August 2022 will be free and fair. Well, I hate to say it in advance: “It will not be”. Because, the National Resistance Movement are already prepared and Dr. Tanga Odoi know what went down in the Soroti East By-Election. So, the truth is in those words and the public shouldn’t be hoodwinked.

The Prime Minister Nabbanja flew in with a helicopter to campaign together with other high ranking officials who is in the area. They are clearly ensuring the path of victory and having the manpower to “ensure victory”. If that being Dombo or NRM operatives on the ground. These will do whatever it takes and that shows with how the NRM has invested in the PM to be there.

Here are some more important statements into the race, which we will be run like Soroti East…

The PM:

PM Robinah Nabbanja, pitches camp in Kisoro to campaign for NRM flag bearer, Eddie Kwizera Wa-gahungu ahead of this week’s Bukimbiri by-election. Nabbanja rallied the locals to support Kwizera, if promises and pledges of gov’t are to be fulfilled” (91.2 Crooze FM, 08.08.2022).

Joint Candidacy of the Opposition:

Kampala, Uganda: The National Unity Platform (NUP) party has withdrawn its candidate in the Bukimbiri county by-election, in order to jointly support James Owebeyi, a candidate for the Forum for Democratic Change-FDC party. Voting in Bukimbiri is scheduled to take place on August 11, 2022. The by-election stems from the court of Appeal’s decision to nullify the victory of Kwizera citing irregularities following a successful application by Owebeyi” (Flash TV Uganda, 07.08.2022).

Joshua Mutabazi statement:

But if, its for the people, but if it was for liberation, but had it been for us then why wait long. We cant keep claiming condemning and consoling. I choose to bridge the struggle but most importantly draw lines between what one needs and what the country needs. What the country needed a decade back was our leaders to be one, we are late. Its my turn, I wont delay therefore announce my withdrawal from the parliamentary seat by-election of the latter mentioned jurisdiction in favor and full support for united struggle. As the country’s need to have united forces of Change ages daily, I and my party decided to take it upon ourselves. If you have ever experienced injustice and by the ungodliness, then you are a candidate to stand against the same. “Do you want to stand out? Then step down. Be a servant. If you puff yourself up, you’ll get the wind knocked out of you. But if you’re content to simply be yourself, your life will count for plenty. Matthew 23:11-12-11-12 MSG If you are unwilling to make an early sacrifice in life, you’ll be beggars and slaves to the men who did” (Joshua Mutabazi – STATEMENT ON MY WITHDRAWAL FROM THE BUKIMBIRI COUNTY PARLIAMENT SEAT BY-ELECTION, 06.08.2022).

That Mutabazi (NUP) is withdrawing his candidature is in line with the united forces in the by-elections. This means the NUP and FDC will combine their efforts and be behind one candidate in the race. It shows that the statement released after the Soroti East By-Election is in effect. The parties are coordinating and ensuring the possible best outcome.

The FDC Owebeyi was able to pull off the petition in the courts after the General Elections of 2021. However, now in the By-Election it is a whole other breed. The state will use all means and tactics. The NRM EC Chairman is even saying it out loud. Expect it to become a military exercise. We should expect mass-arrests, pre-ticked ballots and other malpractices to ensure “victory” of the NRM flag-bearer. That’s how they are doing it and it’s so obvious.

That’s why I have little to no faith in the opposition in these races. Not because I want the NRM to win. I do want anyone else than the NRM to win. However, the way they operate and continues to take the elections. The will of the people isn’t the vital one. It is the total annihilation of the opposition. That’s the goal and the objective…

I don’t see a positive outcome. The FDC flag-bearer James Owebeyi could be a genuine man and an honest actor, the best sort of candidate, but that doesn’t matter. Because, the state is preparing their machine and rigging. The FDC polling agents and activists will soon feel the agony of facing the state. They are getting into the firing line and they tend to answer with brutality. To think otherwise is to be naive in 2022… Peace.

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