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MPs task CEC to address voting procedure in NRM Primaries

Chaos were witnessed in several parts of the country during the NRM primaries

Kampala, Uganda |  THE INDEPENDENT |  A section of National Resistance Movement- NRM party legislators has asked the Central Executive Committee (CEC) to review a decision allowing members not in the party register to vote in the primaries.

Last week, President Yoweri Museveni directed that all NRM members should be allowed to vote whether they are registered or not.  

Museveni, the NRM party Chairman said that those not in the register but are verified as NRM members and are above the age of 18 should be allowed to vote. The decision forced the party EC Chairman Dr Tanga Odoi to retract his earlier statement that only people on the voter’s register would be allowed to vote.

Museveni’s directive has been one of the key issues pointed out by several candidates who lost in the Friday election saying that it was an opportunity for non-party members to vote. These say that the decision is also partly responsible for the violence witnessed.

Henry Makumbi the Mityana South MP who was declared unopposed says that how the primaries were conducted is appalling given that the ruling party needed to be exemplary to others.

He said that the problem emanated from the organization of the elections noting that the provision for everyone to be allowed to vote even when they are not on the register explains why there was violence in the election.

Makumbi called upon the party’s Electoral Commission and the party top organ- Central Executive Committee (CEC) to review this decision in the coming Local Council III and Local Council V primaries.

Daniel Muheirwe Mpamizo, the Buhaguzi County MP who lost in the primaries said that how primary elections were conducted was not impressive.

Muheirwe who has already petitioned the party EC says that there is a need for transparency in the tallying of votes to ascertain the actual winners. He wants CEC to convene and address the matter.  

But Apollo Yeri Ofwono, the Tororo Municipality MP disagrees with his colleagues saying that the primaries were fairly conducted.

On Monday, President Museveni said that whoever participated in irregularities and violence in the primaries will be held accountable.     

In July, the CEC rejected the secret ballot arrangement and supported lining up to ensure transparency and credibility of the electoral process.



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