Uganda: Kaguta, Kawooya Win Sembabule NRM Polls

By AL-MAHDI SSENKABIRWA

Mr Godfrey Aine Kaguta and Ms Anifa Kawooya were yesterday declared winners of the NRM party flag for Mawogola North and Mawogola West constituencies respectively.

The hotly contested NRM party primary election saw Mr Kaguta, the brother of President Museveni, poll 17,343 votes (46 per cent), to take the party flag for Mawogola North, beating his closest rival Ms Shartis Musherure Kutesa, the daughter of Foreign Affairs minister, Sam Kuteesa, who came second with 16,104 votes.

Mr Salim Kisekka came third with 4,272 votes (11.3 per cent).

"I, therefore, declare Aine, who has polled the highest number of votes, the flag bearer for the Mawogola constituency," Mr George William Katokoozi, the NRM registrar, announced at about 8pm to a thunderous applause from Mr Kaguta's supporters.

The three candidates were thereafter called forward and handed their official results.

Mawogola North constituency has 146 villages and five sub-counties while Mawogola West comprises 127 villages and three sub-counties.

Ms Kawooya, the Sembabule Woman MP, on the other hand polled 15,923 votes (54.8 per cent) against Mr Joseph Ssekabiito's 13,143 votes(45.2 per cent) to hold the party flag for Mawogola West.

Ms Kawooya, who has been Woman MP since 2001, opted to contest for the Mawogola County seat.

Ms Mary Begumisa was declared winner for Sembabule District Woman MP flag, having collected 73,940 votes, beating her rivals Jovanice Tondwiire who garnered 16,448 votes and Phoebe Arinaitwe who received 1,111 votes.

Earlier results obtained by the Daily Monitor indicated that Mr Kaguta was leading with a big margin in Sembabule Town Council, Lugusuulu and Mitima sub-counties while Ms Musherure was ahead in Kawanda, Mabindo and Mijwala sub-counties.

Mr Kaguta scooped 1,903 votes in Sembabule Town Council while Ms Musherure got 935 votes, Kisekka (205 votes).

In Lugusuulu, Mr Kaguta polled 4,821 votes while Ms Musherure got 3,251 votes, Mr Kisekka (645 votes) while in Mitima, Mr Kaguta collected 1,991 votes, and Ms Musherure (1,860 votes), while Mr Kisekka collected 218 votes.

In Mijwala, Ms Musherure was ahead of Mr Kaguta with 4,803 votes against his 4,782 votes and Mr Kisekka's got 473 votes.

In Mabindo, Musherure got 1,949 votes, Mr Kaguta (1,323 votes) while Mr Kisekka received 1,257 votes while in Kawanda, Ms Musherure garnered 3,357 votes, Mr Kaguta (2,915 votes), and Mr Kisekka ( 1621 votes ).

At Dispensary ward polling station, Ms Musherure's supporters walked away from the queue when they saw Mr Kaguta leading with 521 vote's .

Mr Kaguta voted from Byesika polling station, Byesika village, Kawanda Sub-county where he got 96 votes against Ms Musherure 's 36 votes.

Mr Kaguta's supporters broke into celebration at around 6pm as motorcades snaked through the villages in Sembabule Town Council, which is one of his strongholds.

In Mawogola West, at Kyenziga A polling station where Ms Kawooya cast her vote, she polled 408 votes while Mr Ssekabitto got 48 votes. At Ndaiga Village, where Mr Ssekabitto hails from, he garnered 566 votes while Ms Kawooya polled 50 votes.

At Nakasenyi Village, Mr Ssekabitto got 137 votes, Ms Kawooya (371 votes), while at Ntete East Village Mr Ssekabiito collected 177 votes against Ms Kawooya's 20 votes.

In Lwebitakuli Sub-county, Ms Kawooya got 6,630 votes against Mr Ssekabitto's 5,052 votes.

Like it has been in earlier party primaries in other districts, there was no observance of Covid-19 guidelines because most voters who turned up either didn't have masks or they wore them wrongly. The afternoon down pour interrupted the exercise, delaying voting at several polling stations for an hour.

Police mounted roadblocks at all roads leading into the district to prevent non-residents from taking part in the polls. This followed reports that some party members from other districts had been ferried into Sembabule to vote for particular candidates in the race.

Sembabule is bordered by several districts, including Mubende in the north, Gomba to the north-east, Kiruhura, Bukomansimbi, Lwengo and Lyantonde.

NRM electoral commission chairperson, Mr Tanga Odoi, who has camped in the area for days, warned voters against engaging in any form of violence, threatening to cancel the exercise once any chaos erupts.

Violence

The NRM electoral body headed by Mr Tanga Odoi early this month postponed the party elections in the two constituencies pending investigations into alleged acts of violence.

This came after Ms Kawooya accused Mr Ssekabiito, the incumbent MP for Mawogola County, of ordering his supporters to beat her up.

The suspension of the Mawogola West election was announced on August 2, to resolve the rising acts of violence.

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