Nebbi, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Electoral Commission has banned fundraising activities during the by-elections for the Nebbi district LC V Chairperson and lower local government officials.
The Nebbi LC V chairperson William Esrom Alenyo succumbed to accident injuries at Mulago National Regional Referral Hospital on September 25th, 2018.
Electoral Commission has appointed July 11th, 2019 as the polling date for the Nebbi LC V chairperson and low local government representatives.
Justice Simon Byabakama Mugenyi, the EC chairman, says no candidate will be allowed to organize any activity aimed at soliciting money from potential voters as it is tantamount to bribery contrary to Section 147(1) of the Local Government Act.
It provides that any person who with intent before or during an election, directly or indirectly influences another person to vote, gives gifts to influence that person’s voting, commits an illegal practice of the offence of bribery and is liable to a fine not exceeding five currency
points or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding two years or both.
“The Electoral Commission informs the general public and all persons intending to contest for the by-elections of district chairperson and other lower local government councils that during the by-elections, no fundraising activities shall be allowed in the district”, reads part of the circular by the EC Chairperson.
Byabakama says culprits found guilty of any fundraising activities will be reprimanded. “This is to allow a leveled ground for all candidates in the race and please note that those found to be
contravening the law shall be dealt with accordingly”, the circular adds.
Michael Arinaitwe, the Nebbi District Returning Officer, says candidates should desist from the practice of fundraising drives as it has the capacity to influence the mind of the registered voter.
Arinaitwe says fundraising activities by candidates can only be allowed after the conclusion of the electoral process. “What we argue is that after the elections have been concluded, no one shall hold you for any form of bribery, be careful when you want to engage in any activitiies meant to solicit money from voters”, he told journalists this afternoon.
George Uthuba, the only independent candidate in the race has asked the Commission to enforce the directive across the board.
The other contestants are Emmanuel Orombi, the National Resistance Movement-NRM party candidate and Forum for Democratic Change-FDC’s Vicky Emmanuel Onyai.