11 December 2017

Uganda: FDC Pulls Out of Ruhaama County Race Over Funding

The Opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has pulled out of the race for Ruhaama county MP seat over failure by prospective candidates to raise nomination fees.

Mr Kenneth Kagundu Kabombora was expected to carry the party's flag in the by-election. He stood in the 2016 elections and emerged third in the race after the late William Beijukye Zinkurateire and Mr Kakyene Namanya Santurina.

The Ntungamo District FDC chairperson Mr George Karamira says the party will not be presenting a candidate in the race as all the prospective candidates have failed to raise fees for nominations.

"The challenge is money. We have people willing to stand but they have failed to raise the nomination fees. I have not stamped anyone's papers and I know there is no one coming for the same and therefore, we shall not be having a candidate for Ruhaama seat," Mr Karamira told Daily Monitor.

The ruling NRM candidate, Mr Moses Kahima Mugabe was nominated on Monday afternoon.

The district electoral commissioner Mr Robert Beine said they were expecting other three candidates to pick nomination forms on the independent tickets but had not turned up yet.

The candidates; Dr Pamela Beinomugisha Jumbo, Mr Eric Boora and Ms Orishaba Vastinah picked the nomination papers.

However, another MP hopeful, Mr Santurina Kakyene Namanya also pulled out of the race. He said we will not be contesting over financial constraints in addition to not trusting the exercise.

"I think the process is highly monetized. There is a lot of intimidation of voters by the NRM and security organs. In fact the RDC said they would arrest me if I came to stand when the electoral commission held a consultative meeting and the people who harassed me in the past campaign still exist," Mr Kakyene said.

The Ruhaama county MP seat fell vacant following the death of Beijukye on October 4, 2017. Beijukye had represented the constituency for at about 18 months after replacing the First Lady Janet Museveni who did not stand in the 2016 elections.

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