DP in High-Level Meeting to Discuss Election Defeat

2304 Views Masaka, Uganda

In short
Democratic Party head honchos meet in Masaka to resolve crisis within their party and to review the 2011 general elections.

By the end of this weekend, the Democratic Party (DP) will have agreed on a common position on how to deal with the numerous cases of bribery, ballot stuffing and outright rigging that it claims occurred during the presidential, parliamentary and local council elections.
 
The DP claims that the rigging cost some of its strongest candidates their election.
 
A meeting is being held at Tropic Inn Hotel in Masaka to map out a post-election strategy. The party’s bigwigs like its President-General Norbert Mao, vice president John Kawanga, Secretary General Matthias Nsubuga and legal advisor Fred Mukasa Mbidde are attending the meeting.
 
Matthias Nsubuga, who lost his re-election bid for the Bukoto South parliamentary seat, says DP members are displeased with the outcome of the elections. He says the Electoral Commission was biased and too weak to stop the reported cases of bribery, intimidation, violence and ballot box stuffing.
 
Nsubuga says it is clear that the Electoral Commission supported candidates from President Yoweri Museveni’s National Resistance Movement and any complaints about impropriety by the ruling party were ignored.  He says that even with the elections over, the rigging has continued through the influence of pro-NRM judges and magistrates.
 
//Cue in: “There were so many irregularities …”
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Ffeffekka Serubogo, the DP candidate who lost the Mukono mayoral election, says he was defeated at the polls because disgruntled members of the party campaigned against him. He says the splinter group called Ssuubi 2011 was strong enough to bring him down.
 
Serubogo says he hopes that the meeting will agree to mend fences with Ssuubi 2011 in order to rebuild its ranks. He says divisions in the party were used by the NRM, which bought off dissatisfied DP members and turned them against him.
 
//Cue in: “There was a lot of money …”
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Mohammed Baswari Kezaala, the DP national chairperson, says he is concerned that the Democratic Party, the oldest political party in Uganda, is losing key members.
 
Kezaala, one of the few party leaders who won the elections, says he wants DP to mend its constitution to incorporate the Uganda Young Democrats fully into the party. He says if it fails to do so, it will lose youth support to the National Resistance Movement and the Forum for Democratic Change.

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About the author

Edward Bindhe
Bindhe prides himself on being a part of the society he writes about. He believes there is no way a journalist can understand his society unless it considers him a part of it. This is why he is dedicated to investigating the challenges of the "little person."

Bindhe says, "My work reflects the Uganda Radio Network unique approach to news." Not many Ugandan journalists would consider or even notice the re-emergence of Water Hyacinth on a lake. Bindhe does.

Truant children will attract Bindhe's attention until he gets to the bottom of their truancy: poverty and the need to work to earn bread for their families. These are the kinds of stories Bindhe is often after.

Edward Bindhe is the Masaka URN bureau chief. Rakai, Lwengo, Lyantonde, Kalangala, Mpigi, Kalungu, Bukomansimbi and Sembabule districts fall under his docket. He has been a URN staff member since 2009.

A Mass Communication graduate from Uganda Christian University, Bindhe started practising journalism in 2008 as a reporter for Radio Buddu in Masaka district.