DP and UPC on Wednesday stealthily went behind FDC and nominated candidates to contest for the two slots in breach of an agreement they had made to boycott the elections until court decides on the matter.
A huge rift has emerged amongst opposition parties in parliament over the two remaining slots for the opposition at the East African Legislative Assembly – EALA. DP and UPC on Wednesday stealthily went behind FDC and nominated candidates to contest for the two slots in breach of an agreement they had made to boycott the elections until court decides on the matter.
Dennis Mbidde and Chris Opoka were nominated to contest on the DP and UPC party tickets respectively during the final elections on Wednesday next week. The decision by the two smaller parties in the house has angered the FDC that feels betrayed and drawn angry reaction with some FDC MPs accusing DP and UPC of cutting deals with the ruling party.
Both parties have denied the allegations. Opposition Shadow Attorney General, Abdu Katuntu, told journalists on Thursday that they got surprised to learn that UPC and DP had nominated candidates and described the situation as regrettable.
He said that DP and UPC had signed an agreement together with FDC to boycott the election until the Arusha court determines through an interpretation, what Article 50 of the Treaty, which relates to feasibility of sharing of slots between political parties represented in the House, means.
He said that it would not be bad for the two parties to inform them if they had decided to change their position on the boycott. Katuntu however, said that as the main opposition party in the house, they were still going to Arusha to file a new court case against the election of Ugandan representatives to the regional parliament.
But the UPC legal advisor in Parliament, Ayena Odongo, distanced his party from the accusations of betrayal, instead transferring the blame to their DP counterpart. Ayena said they moved fast yesterday to nominate Chris Opoka after they learnt that DP’s Mbidde and his Secretary General, Mathias Nsubuga had agreed to have Mbidde nominated.
Ayena blames the Leader of Opposition in Parliament, Nandala Mafabi, for the divide within their side. He said that the FDC has always taken all positions meant for the opposition without considering smaller parties in the house.
Cue: “Even on the floor of parliament……….”
Cue Out: “………..are we being left behind.”
Some opposition MPs have now accused Mbidde of cutting a deal with the NRM to vote for him, with others even suggesting that the DP legal advisor could have taken money from the ruling party to betray the opposition position, an allegation he has flatly rejected.
Cue In: “You just need to know the kind……….”
Cue Out: “……….if we address it in money terms.”
The nomination period officially ended on Wednesday afternoon, closing out the main opposition party, the FDC, from this year’s EALA race, unless the court decides in their favour. Vetting for the nominees’ credentials was going on this afternoon in parliament.
Meanwhile, the FDC was reportedly meeting in a closed door crisis discussion over the matter, with unconfirmed reports indicating a decision to throw out of the shadow cabinet all UPC and DP MPs. Apart from the four opposition whips who are not FDC, there are five shadow ministers in the 32-member opposition cabinet.
fdc angered by dp and upc
eala elections 2012