Nominations For Aruu North Byelection Underway

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In short
On February 6th, the Court of Appeal nullified the election of Lucy Achiro Otims election for non-compliance with electoral laws after the Electoral Commission failed to conduct a vote recount requested by NRM party James Nabinson Kidega. Achiro had polled 8,599 votes against Kidegas 8,597, according to results released by Pader district returning officer Joseph Amone.

Nominations for Aruu North Parliamentary by-election is underway in Electoral Commission offices in Pader town.
  
Police have been deployed to provide a ring of security around the facility. By the time of filing this report, the first candidate was yet to be nominated due to delays related to payment of nomination fees.

Joseph Omona, the Pader district registrar says several aspirants were rescheduling their nomination bookings citing failure to pay their nomination fees due to the International Women's Day public holiday yesterday.
 
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Ten aspirants picked nomination papers for the seat that fell vacant in January following a Court of Appeal ruling that upheld an aerlier ruling by the High Court which overturned the election of independent candidate Lucy Achiro Otim.

On February 6th, the Court of Appeal nullified the election of Lucy Achiro Otim's election for non-compliance with electoral laws after the Electoral Commission failed to conduct a vote recount requested by NRM party James Nabinson Kidega.
 
Kidega who lost to Achiro by two votes petitioned court for a recount. Achiro had polled 8,599 votes against Kidega's 8,597, according to results released by Pader district returning officer Joseph Omona.
  
Joseph Omona, the Pader district electoral commission registrar identified three aspirants running under political party tickets as Nabinson James Kidega (NRM), Vincent Okot Obutu (DP) and Bernard Onen Okeny (FDC).
  
The other six are running as independent aspirants. They are David Ojera Robert Obina Komakech, Benrad Obina Ologi, Justin Boswell Oryema, Lucy Achiro Otim, Henry Komakech and Francis Helton Nyeko Lakile.
  
Amone says he is yet to confirm interests by some aspirants to step aside in favour of others that have been indicated in phone calls to him.
 
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Lucy Achiro Otim says she will come for nomination on Friday at 11am but would confirm her affiliation later.
  
Uganda Radio Network understands that there has been negotiations with FDC to have Bernard Onen Okeny step down in favour of Achiro. Okeny could not be reached for comment.
  
Aruu North constituency comprises of the sub counties of Angagura, Laguti, Acholibur, Latanya, Atanga, Lapul and Pajule.

Major issues likely to inform the campaigns include health challenges related to persisting nodding syndrome in some sub counties, controversial cattle restocking in Aswa ranch, poor performance in education and low agricultural production amongst others. 
 

 

About the author

Peter Labeja
Peter Labeja has been a practicing journalist for the last 13 years during which he has covered part of the brutal conflict which bedeviled Northern Uganda as well as the painful transition to Peace thereafter. Emerging post conflict issues such as land rights of under privileged widows and orphans, challenges of access to social services in the immediate aftermath of Lord’s Resistance Army conflict in Northern Uganda.

Labeja is now the Northern Uganda Bureau chief in Acholi Sub Region since 2014 - Gulu, Amuru, Nwoya and Omoro districts as well as South Sudan falls within his areas of jurisdiction. He previously worked with The Vision Group for four years.

Labeja’s major career interests are in Climate Change; Agriculture and Environment - natural resources such as Water, Oil and Gas; Transitional Justice; Human Rights, Democracy and Governance as well as South Sudan’s humanitarian crisis. In 2013, Labeja was awarded a prestigious Pan African Journalism Award for excellence in journalism at United Nation’s UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya for Climate Change and Health Reporting.