Uganda: NRM Poll Losers Demand Compensation

26 October 2020

The National Resistance Movement (NRM) candidates who lost the party primaries and were nominated as independents by the Electoral Commission have asked the party to compensate them before they step down.

They made the demand before a reconciliatory meeting with the party flag bears for MPs and district chairpersons in Lira City last Friday.

Mr Richard Gulume, who was assigned by the NRM Central Executive Committee to coordinate the reconciliatory process in Lira, Kole and Oyam districts, said it was promising.

Progress

"We had a fruitful meeting, but the independent candidates who lost in the NRM primaries are demanding that the money which they wasted during campaigns and nominations should be refunded before they can step down," Mr Gulume said.

"Those who resigned from the civil service jobs to join politics are demanding that they should be reinstated and once these two conditions are met by the party, they are willing to be denominated and they will back the party flag bearers," he added.

Some of the candidates include Mr Paul Amoru (Dokolo North), Ms Doreen Amule (Amolatar Woman), Mr Bonny Okello (Kole North), Mr Isaac Okwir Ebong (Ajuri County), Ms Christine Acen Ayo (Alebtong Woman) and Ms Christine Akello (Erute North).

Some of the losers condemned the way the voting was conducted, especially blaming President Museveni's directive that unregistered party members be allowed to vote as long as they could be verified by the village executive committees.

Mr Andrew Onyuk, an official in the reconciliatory team, said Mr Museveni, the NRM national chairman, sent them to the aggrieved parties to ensure unity in the party. "That is why he has dispatched a team throughout the country to heal the wounds which were caused by the primary election. He has sent us here to convince those who felt bitter after losing and decided to contest for the general elections as independent candidates to step down," he said.

Mr Onyuk said the reconciliation must be done before November 9, the date set by the Electoral Commission for starting campaigns.

Mr Richard Omara Awio, the Lira District NRM general secretary, said the primaries had caused a lot of internal division.

Other areas

Some of the legislators from other areas who failed to get the party flag include Mr Kenneth Lubogo (Bulamogi), Ms Monica Amoding (Kumi Woman), Maj Guma Gumisiriza (Ibanda North), James Kakooza (Kabula), Ms Jalia Bintu Lukumu (Masindi Woman)and Mr Margaret Baba Diri (Koboko Woman).

Last month Mr Kakooza, who has been an Independent MP, said he would seek re-election the same way he did in 2016.

"I thought this time it would be different but the worst happened. The inaccuracies in the register cannot give a version of the results expected in the General Election," he said.

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