Gershom Sizomu, the Jewish rabbi contesting for the Bunghoko North parliamentary seat, has filed a complaint with the police, accusing his opponent of bribing voters.
Sizomu, a candidate of the Forum for Democratic Change, claims that the incumbent MP Yahaya Gudoi is systematically dishing out money to buy the loyalty of voters. He says he has evidence that Gudoi sets up camp just outside the venue of his campaign rallies and hands out small sums of money to people.
Sizomu says this is all intended to undermine his candidacy.
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Sizomu has reported the case to both the police and the Electoral Commission.
Yahaya Gudoi dismisses the claims. He says he cannot afford to bribe voters and challenges the police to find any evidence to the contrary.
The Bunghoko North parliamentary race is one of the hottest in Mbale district. Seven candidates are contesting for the post, but pundits say the race is really between Sizomu and his NRM opponent, Yahaya Gudoi.
Gudoi has significant name recognition, thanks to his five years in parliament. Before his political career, he served as a teacher and school administrator in and around Mbale.
However, Gershom Sizomu is also widely known.
Sizomu is the first recognized black Jewish rabbi in Sub-Saharan Africa. He is the leader of the world-renowned Jewish sect, Abayudaya and has participated in numerous social development projects in Bunghoko.