A new pressure group, the Citizen's Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda -CCEDU has proposed changes to the constitution and Electoral Laws to ensure free and fair elections in 2011.
The coalition is comprised of Civil Society Groups as well as individual citizens.
Among the proposed amendments the coalitions wants the electoral commission to have powers to push for electoral reforms, ten months prior to general elections.
The Coalition is also suggesting a constitutional amendment to prohibit politicians from holding both ministerial and Parliamentary positions.
It also wants article 78 of the constitution amended to abolish representation in parliament for special interest groups like Women, Workers, Youth, the Army and People with disabilities.
Godber Tumushabe, the executive director of the Advocates Coalition for Development and Environment says the reforms are necessary to liberate the electoral process from potential manipulation by various political interest groups.
Tumushabe says that research findings indicate that apart from compromising the autonomy of parliament interest groups have been of limited value to the legislative process.
Former Mbarara Municipality Woman MP, Miria Matembe backed the idea of abolishing the interest accusing them of serving political patronage.
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Other suggestion include the demand for reinstatement of the Presidential term limits, a ban on the creation of more districts, amendment of article 60 of the constitution to provide age limit for persons to be appointed as commissioners to the Electoral commission and also provide for transparent selection of the Electoral Commission.
Gulu District Chairperson, Norbert Mao however says that the Presidential term should be extended to six years and be limited to a single term in office. Mao concurs with the proposal that the district women slot in Parliament be removed and replaced by proportional representation based on political parties.
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