Five Candidates Battle for Kamuli Municipality Parliamentary Seat

3753 Views Kamuli, Uganda

In short
They include, incumbent Rehema Watongola- a representative of the ruling National Resistance Movement NRM party and Proscovia Salaamu Musumba, representing the opposition Forum for Democratic Change. The others are independent candidates Samuel Walujjo, Michael Kiboome and Prossy Naikoba Kanakutanda.

At least five candidates will be contesting for the Kamuli municipality parliamentary seat following nominations by the Electoral Commission that ended Friday evening.

They include, incumbent Rehema Watongola- a representative of the ruling National Resistance Movement - NRM party and Proscovia Salaamu Musumba, representing the opposition Forum for Democratic Change. The others are independent candidates Samuel Walujjo, Michael Kiboome and Prossy Naikoba Kanakutanda.

The by-election follows the nullification of Rehema Watongola's 2016 victory over lack of academic qualifications.  In a petition filed by FDC's Salaamu Musumba, court heard that Watongola did not possess the required minimum to contest for a parliamentary seat.

The Minimum qualification for Members of Parliament in Uganda is an advanced level Certificate of Education, also known as A-level or its equivalent. But Musumba successfully convinced court that the documents from Busoga University that Rehema Watongola presented for her nomination, were obtained fraudulently.

Musumba argued that the certificate used by Watongola to gain admission to Busoga University was forged and that the university had since cancelled her qualifications which included a diploma and degree certificates in Public Administration and Management. Watongola has since gone back to school and sat for the A-level last year.

The two rivals, together with three other persons, contested for the same seat in 2016 and Rehema Watongola emerged winner with a score of 8,174 votes against Musumba's 6,702.

Musumba is fronting advocacy for reforms in local government and increasing resources to lower local government as a pivot for her campaign. On the other hand, Watongola says she needs to retain her seat and implement what she presents as the peoples manifesto and programme.

"They had put a comma on my stay in the house and here I come to seek re-election so that we continue from where we stopped." she said adding that her focus still rotates around support to education and ending child marriages.

Meanwhile one of the candidates   Ceaser Lukalu was bounced after failing to present certified copies of his academic credentials.

Kamuli District Returning Officer Gracious Araija warned candidates against starting campaigns before March 27, the day official campaigns are expected to begin.
 
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The Electoral Commission has set April 12 as polling day.

 

About the author

Beatrice Nyangoma
Beatrice Nyangoma values her independence as a journalist. This was one of her major considerations before she became a URN staffer in 2015.

Nyangoma says, "I like URN because it gives me room to decide what stories I want to work on. That is so important to me."

The URN Jinja bureau chief since July 2016, Nyangoma considers health matters a beat close to her heart. One of the highlights of her career so far were her exclusive interviews unveiling the rot in Mulago hospital in early 2016.

Nyangoma started out writing for the Red Pepper newspaper in 2011 in her final year of university. She was majorly a health reporter. In 2012, Nyangoma moved to Top Television as a health, business reporter and weekend news editor. She was also the assistant editorial manager of Kabarole Research and Resource Centre FM (KRC FM).