NRM EALA Primaries to Resume Today After the First Session Hit Snag

NRM EALA Primaries to Resume Today After the First Session Hit Snag

By Serestino Tusingwire

Elections for NRM candidates to be forwarded for approval by parliament are to resume today at state house after the first session was halted following disagreements on the number of candidates to be considered.

Trou­ble started af­ter the ruling party MPs were is­sued with guide­lines for the elec­tions hours to the polls, which sought to elect 6 mem­bers to be ap­proved by Par­lia­ment on Feb­ru­ary 27th.

When vot­ing was about to com­mence, the MPs were shocked to learn from Dr Tanga that they would be vot­ing for 7 slots. These in­cluded a rep­re­sen­ta­tive each from North, East, West, Cen­tral and Kam­pala.

Fur­ther­more, a po­si­tion was cre­ated for the women slot and a seat for spe­cial in­ter­est groups, where work­ers, youths and Per­sons with Dis­abil­i­ties (PWDs), fall.

This in­fu­ri­ated a num­ber of MPs in­clud­ing Buyaga MP Barn­abas Tin­kasimire, Arua Woman MP, Mau­reen Os­oru, Ngora Woman MP, Jack­line Amon­gin who ac­cused Tanga of tin­ker­ing with the guide­lines to cre­ate an ad­di­tional slot yet the NRM is ex­pected to front only 6 po­si­tions.

NRM Sec­re­tary Gen­eral, Jus­tine Lu­mumba also openly re­jected the 7 po­si­tions, in­sist­ing that there should be 6 slots to be voted for. Ef­forts by the Gov­ern­ment Chief Whip, Ruth Nankabirwa, Tanga and Al Ha­jji Moses Kigongo to calm the leg­is­la­tors proved fu­tile.

Pres­i­dent Yow­eri Mu­sev­eni, who had ear­lier ad­dressed the MPs in his ca­pac­ity as party chair­man, later or­dered that fresh elec­tions are held to­day, Wednes­day Feb­ru­ary 8th at 2 pm.

With the num­ber of can­di­dates pre­vi­ously stand­ing at 43, 5 pulled out a day to the polls while one of the can­di­dates and for­mer Bun­y­ole MP, Em­manuel Dombo pulled out of the race shortly be­fore the ex­er­cise at State House, cit­ing ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties in the process.

This means that 37 can­di­dates will tus­sle it out dur­ing the fresh polls. Ear­lier, Pres­i­dent Mu­sev­eni warned the MPs against view­ing the race to EALA as a job op­por­tu­nity, rather an im­por­tant and cru­cial ser­vice to the coun­try.

“These elec­tions are not just elec­tions. These are not em­ploy­ment bu­reaus. You are not here to give jobs to job­less peo­ple. You are here to se­lect peo­ple to sup­port in­te­gra­tion of East Africa,” Mu­sev­eni stated.