19 March 2019

Uganda: Archbishop Calls for Peaceful 2021 Polls

Gulu — The Archbishop of Gulu Archdiocese, Dr John Baptist Odama, has asked President Museveni to work with his opponents for a peaceful pre-election period ahead of the 2021 presidential polls.

The prelate, who presided over prayers during the commissioning of a new Shs480 million medical ward, called for peaceful elections in 2021 and warned that the country should not be dragged into unnecessary violence.

"The President is the first servant and should look at others as his fellow workers being employed by the people through elections that are conducted constitutionally.

"There is no need to fight each other. All the parties should have respect because their target is not the party but the service to the people," he said.

The medical ward was built by the Huffer family of Germany at St Mauritz Health Centre III, in Laroo Division, Gulu Town, to boost maternal health.

Gulu Archdiocese in partnership with St Mauritz Family of Germany put up the facility with a 50-bed capacity complex comprising a general ward, a maternity wing and the neo-natal unit.

Archbishop Odama said the NRM party was free to mobilise itself but should avoid acts that could spark violence and fights among political parties and the population.

Timely remarks

His remarks come in the wake of increasing attacks against each other by politicians.

Last week, while meeting Kampala city youth at State House Entebbe, President Museveni said Kyadondo East legislator Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine, should forget about politics and stick to music.

Mr Museveni also accused Mr Kyagulanyi of misleading the youth into violence which has affected the country's image and investment.

However, Archbishop Odama said the powers to decide on who to lead the country lies with the mandate of the people.

"They should see each other as workers being employed by the people through the elections. Leaders come and go after they have served. The citizens remain and they are the ones who decide on who is their next leader," he added.

Recently, Mr Kyagulanyi, 37, declared his intention to contest for president in 2021.

The declaration means he is likely to contest against President Museveni, 74, who has been in power since 1986.

NRM MPs and the NRM's central executive committee have endorsed Museveni as the party's sole candidate for 2021 polls.

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