FDC’s Lucy Akello Wins Amuru By-election

Lucy Akello casting her vote on Thursday. She is the new MP
Lucy Akello casting her vote on Thursday. She is the new MP

The Forum for Democratic Change flag bearer who is also the joint opposition candidate in the by-elections for Amuru Woman MP Lucy Akello has defeated five other candidates in the poll that was held on Thursday.

The seat fell vacant recently after area MP and junior minister for Water Betty Bigombe resigned. This followed her new job with the World Bank.

Akello beat her closest rival Jane Frances Okilli Amongin (NRM) with a margin of 717 after polling 7,420 against NRM’s Jane Okilli who got 6,701 votes.

The third in the race was journalist Poline Achan who stood as an independent, she gannered 775 votes,  the Conservative party candidate Suzan Adokorach Bwot received 300 votes and Caroline Aber who garnered 146 votes.

Samuel Olet, the Electoral commissions returning officer of Amuru, declared Akello winner of the highly contested elections at 11:30pm at the electoral commissions offices in Amuru, Kati Kati.

The total number of valid votes cast for the candidates were 15,342 while those that were counted were 16,051 and 709 declared invalid.

An excited Akello said the people’s will had triumphed. Akello said she would concentrate during her term on improving the land policy, governance, education, roads and infrastructure development in Amuru.

However there was chaos when one of the poll results from Pabbo Sub County in Gaya parish went missing.

But Olet, the returning officer, said the missing 370 ballots from Pabbo would not have made any significant difference in the final results. Olet however said they would deal with the people responsible for the missing results.

The Amuru RDC James Kidega was rather furious on why the electoral commission had gone ahead to count the votes with some of the ballot boxes missing, he said that this would clearly mean the results were tampered with.

However the opposition politicians Kasiano Wadri the Terego county MP, Cecilia Ogwal the Dokolo district MP, Gilbert Olanya the Kilak county MP, Martin Ojara Mapenduzi, the chairman Gulu district,Patrick Okello Oryema the Nwoya district chairperson and Simon Oyet the former Nwoya district MP could not hide their joy  at the win.

Electoral Commison Chairperson Badru Kiggundu was present to witness the election.

Over the past one and a half months opposition leaders like Mugisha Muntu FDC, Norbert Mao, DP, Olara Otunnu UPC have been campaigning for the IPC candidate while the president and other top NRM party officials campaigned for Okilli.

Lucy Akello has been the executive director of a peace based NGO in Gulu for over 10 years while Jane Okilli was Betty Bigombe’s rival in the 2011 polls.


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