Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Mayoral candidates in Makindye Division yesterday used social media, short message services and vehicles to mobilize voters to participate in elections following a poor turn up at various polling stations in the area.
Perusi Munaaba, the only female candidate contesting against 10 men for the mayoral seat said that it was important to mobilise voters through WhatsApp and Short Message Services, because many had no idea about today’s polls. Munaana tapped into youths, business and women social media groups in various parishes, where she sent messages.
Ali Kasirye Nganda, a candidate of the National Unity Platform says that he has been using social media to campaign among and opted to use the same to mobilise voters to exercise their right to vote. Kasirye’s campaign team had more than 18 groups of youths, businessmen, women and professionals at all levels and residents of Makindye Division.
Bob Muhumuza, the National Resistance Movement-NRM party candidate said that the intent was to mobilise voters to turn up and vote because many did not know that there was an election taking place, while others had been discouraged by the heavy downpour that disrupted the process early in the day.
But under the pretext of mobilising voters, many of the agents were heard canvassing for voters, while some were using motorcycles to ferry voters to polling stations. The agents visited homes and convincing them to go and vote for their candidates.
Ivan Munanura, the Makindye division Elections Administrator said that some of the actions, like campaigning and ferrying voters are illegal and can be used to challenge the outcome of the process. Campaigns for the candidates officially ended on Saturday, January 23.
Eleven candidates are vying for the Makindye Division Mayoral seat. They include Ali Kasirye Nganda, Moses Kalungi, Bob Muhumuza, Sabuka Tigatoola, Perusi Munaaba, Malcolm James Ssewanyana, Muzafaru Kiyimba, Henry Kigenyi, Ashraf Kayiga, Gulobe Muhammad, Ali Ahmed Zikusooka.