Preparations for Hoima LC5 By-Election Marred by Suspicion and Heavy Security

Hoima LC5 By-Election: A Tense Showdown Looms
PHOTO - FILE - Hoima LC5 By-Election: A Tense Showdown Looms
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In Hoima District, preparations for the LC5 by-election have taken an alarming turn. Security forces, backed by the military, have been mobilized, and the Electoral Commission’s readiness is under scrutiny.

The chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Justice Simon Byabakama, was seen in a pre-polling meeting with other commissioners. The meeting took place at Dwoli Primary School in Hoima District on September 13, 2023. However, despite the appearance of readiness, many concerns linger.

Security measures, which include military involvement, have been beefed up, as confirmed by the Albertine Region police commander, Mr. Vincent Mwesigye. The prospect of the army’s involvement in a local election raises eyebrows.

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The by-election, set to happen today, will involve a total of 94,824 registered voters from 14 lower administrative units in the district. This election aims to fill the position left vacant following the tragic death of Kadiri Kirungi in a road accident on March 17.

Ms. Merab Kasande, the Hoima District Returning Officer, assures us of the Electoral Commission’s preparedness. She states that all polling materials were delivered to the district on time, and voting will take place across 173 polling stations from 7 am to 4 pm. The African Electoral Alliance will also monitor the process.

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Despite these assurances, there are doubts. To ensure a peaceful election, security personnel will be stationed at polling stations. Justice Byabakama emphasizes early voter turnout, particularly in the rainy season, providing voters’ registers to all candidates.

A complaints desk headed by Deputy Chairperson Hajjat Aisha Lubega will address election-related issues. Observers have been accredited to monitor, but suspicions are rife. Justice Byabakama cautions against the use of unmarked vehicles by security agencies, fearing disruption.

Mr. Leonard Mulekwah, the Secretary to the Electoral Commission, mentions the receipt of vehicles for material transportation, intending to start dispatching materials at 2 am. But it remains to be seen if all party agents will be present during delivery.


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Opeto Emmanuel
Opeto Emmanuel
20 days ago

Where is Uganda going?