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NRM opposes printing ballot papers from abroad

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The National Resistance Movement- NRM party has opposed any efforts by the Electoral Commission to print the ballot papers from abroad.

Speaking to reporters shortly after a presidential aspirants meeting at the Electoral Commission headquarters in Kampala on Thursday, Justine Kasule Lumumba, the Secretary-General of the NRM said they must support local companies that are struggling due to Covid-19.

She said that although the law protects the Electoral Commission from being influenced by anybody while it carries out its duties, it must not forget that it’s still part of the government.

Lumumba said that the government adopted the policy on local enterprise promotion’ the Buy Uganda Build Uganda initiative, and therefore, it is incumbent upon all government agencies including the Electoral Commission to follow it.

This week, the Director of the Procurement and Disposal of Public Asset Authority- PPDA Benson Turamye quashed the contracts in which the Electoral Commission had procured foreign companies to print the over 187 million ballot papers to be used for the 2021 presidential, parliamentary and local government elections.

Companies like Picfare Group of Companies, New Vision, Graphic Design among others queried how some foreign companies had been awarded contracts over and above the amount the local companies had bid for.

PPDA directed the Electoral Commission to re-evaluate its decision with a view of awarding some printing deals to local companies.

However, during a press conference today, Electoral Commission chairman Justine Simon Byabakama Mugenyi doubled down on his commission’s view to side-line local companies. He said that although some companies might look big, they can’t pull off the job of such magnitude.

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