NRM Elections Suspended In Lwengo, Masaka

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In short
The Lwengo NRM primaries have been halted after two aspirants were allegedly caught with 7,000 pre-ticked ballot papers, sparking protests from party supporters.

The National Resistance Movement primaries in Lwengo and Masaka districts have been temporarily stopped. The Lwengo primaries were stopped following arrest of two aspirants with 7,000 pre-ticked ballot papers, while in Masaka some aspirants are missing on the ballot paper.
 
Lwengo Resident District Commissioner, Richard Ntulume ordered the process to stop, to allow district party leaders and aspirants to consult on a way forward.
 
Police was forced to fire tear gas and live bullets after a section of NRM supporters in Lwengo blocked the Masaka-Mbarara highway, demanding the cancellation of the election.

Some of the protesters stormed Lwengo police station and threatened to burn it down.

The protests were triggered by allegations that Lwengo district woman MP aspirant, Sarah Nkonge and Bukoto Midwest MP, Isaac Sejjoba were found with 7000 pre-ticket ballot papers.

 
Earlier, police had arrested the incumbent LC 5 chairman, George Mutabaazi, and Michael Mbilimu, the police officer in charge of the political desk with eight ballot boxes.

The NRM supporters who stormed the police station threatened to lynch Mutabaazi.
 
The crisis meeting has been called at NM Hotel, but party members have stormed the venue. Police is battling the angry supporters to stop them from disorganizing the meeting.
 
Lwengo NRM registrar, Ronald Muwanga has  declined to comment about the alleged pre-ticket ballot papers and recovered boxes.
 
In Masaka district, voting has also been suspended after errors were discovered on Bukoto East ballot papers.  The ballot paper for the MP had only two people, yet there are three aspirants in the race.
 
Only Kizito Nsubuga and Dr. Abdul Nkoyoyo are in the ballot paper, while Phoebe Kyewalyanga is missing. Kyewalyanga accused the party of malice, and broke down at the police station.
 
Masaka Resident District Commissioner, James Kigozi intervened and stopped the distribution of ballot papers until they consult on a way forward.

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By 10am, voting had not yet kicked off in Masaka, Rakai, Kalangala and Sembabule districts. In Lyantonde, the ballot papers were yet to be distributed to all sub-counties.

 

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.