Up to 122 members of the FDC's National Executive Committee—NEC are at the FDC national offices to endorse two out of the seven candidates contesting to secure the party ticket for EALA elections.
Voting is underway at the Forum for Democratic Change—FDC headquarters in Najjanankumbi, Kampala, as the party holds its primaries to choose candidates for the East African Legislative Assembly.
Up to 122 members of the party’s National Executive Committee—NEC are at the FDC national offices to endorse two out of the seven candidates contesting to secure the party ticket.
Those in the race include top party officials vice president Salaamu Musumba, secretary for research Augustine Ruzindana, secretary for defense John Kazoora and Ingrid Turinawe, the women’s league chairperson. The others are former MP Christopher Kibazanga, Prossy Naikoba, and Anita Among, a lecturer at Kampala International University.
Top party officials including President Kiiza Besigye and vice president Ogenga Latigo did not come to vote but cast their ballots by proxy through representatives. Besigye was represented by Chapaa Karuhanga while party publicist Wafula Oguttu represented Latigo.
The other official who did not turn up but voted by proxy is Amanya Mushega, who was represented by little known Gloria Baga.
The party is still silent on what would happen to the primaries since the deadline for holding party elections passed on Wednesday last week. On May 21, the ruling NRM endorsed six candidates for EALA, resolving to send back incumbents Dora Byamukama, Nusura Tiperu, Mike Ssebalu, Dan Kidega, Margaret Zziwa and Bernard Mulengani.
FDC secretary general Alice Alaso says they are still banking on a petition filed at the East African Court of Justice seeking to overturn earlier nominations on grounds that they did not follow Article 50 of the East African Treaty. The Article empowers national parliaments of member states to explore a feasibility of having all parties in parliament represented.
By end of day on Monday, the two party lawyers led by Wandera Ogalo had not yet submitted the petition in Arusha, but Alaso now says it has been submitted.
Opposition first resolved to boycott the EALA polls after failing to agree with the ruling party on how to share the nine seats allocated to Uganda at the regional parliament. The other parties however, went ahead and secretly nominated candidates for EALA, leaving FDC at the risk of missing out on the regional representation. Democratic Party endorsed its legal advisor Mukasa Mbidde while UPC nominated Chris Opoka for the regional parliament.
The position of Louis Dramadri, another party candidate who had secured nomination, is also still unclear with party officials saying he was disqualified for allegedly forging the Secretary General Alice Alaso’s signature. While Alaso says Dramadri was disqualified and forced to apologise, the Clerk to Parliament Jane Lubowa Kibirige says the FDC man is still a candidate.
When pushed to comment on the issue, Alaso said she wrote to Kibirige complaining about Dramadri’s candidature and that the insistence by the Clerk to maintain the candidate is wrong and shows that she is partisan.
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