Uganda’s opposition party Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has set up a committee of elders to gather views on how to deal with the current party differences.
The views to be gathered from party members are expected to focus on recommendation number four as per the Commission of Inquiry and Reconciliation led by lawyer Ladislaus Rwakafuzi.
The recommendation is on the question of Major General Mugisha Muntu’s tenure as President which has left many confused.
The five man committee appointed by Muntu himself as requested by the Interim National Executive Committee includes FDC Chief Whip Winnie Kiiza Bihande, Secretary for Research Augustine Ruzindana, party spokesperson Wafula Oguttu, Soroti Woman MP Angeline Osege and Jack Wamai Wamanga, the Mbale Municipality MP.
The Executive Secretary will forward the Terms of Reference and choose its own chairperson.
The committee has also been given 14 days within which to conduct its business and have a report ready for presentation.
FDC spokesperson Wafula Ogutu today refuted reports that the Party is going to hold fresh Presidential elections after the November 2012 polls that brought Muntu into office left the party divided and on the verge of splitting up. The Bukhooli Central MP says this has been a misleading rumour that has persisted to the extent that some party members now believe it.
In what seems to be a public acceptance to the party wrangles, Wafula agrees that during the November 2012 elections there were some misunderstandings and disagreements within the Party.
It was over the electoral process and on whether the newly elected President was to serve for two years or five years. Some people within the party reasoned that the elections would be a stop-gap measure, to enable the new president serve for two years and complete former party leader Dr Kiiza Besigye’s term, while others said the new leader would serve a full term of five years as per the party Constitution.
Wafula adds that it is unfortunate that the issue had not been explicitly communicated to the party membership before the elections took place.
Wafula states that it was a shortcoming that the party regrets. Everyone assumed whatever suited their interests and this is the reason the party has remained divided, according to Wafula.
He however, calls this an internal contradiction within the party which is being addressed through established Party mechanisms.
Wafula states that they know the results of the elections were accepted by most voters including the other candidates such as leader of Opposition Nandala Mafabi. Mafabi lost to Muntu in the polls.