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2017 POLITICAL SURPRISE: Amuriat FDC Presidency

The political journey of little known then Kumi County MP, Patrick Amuriat had been easily written off by academically challenged Ismail Orot in 2016 parliamentary elections.

Unlike Alice Alaso or Angelina Osege, domiciliary known countrywide, Amuriat who had been MP for three consecutive terms since 2001 failed to make a national name and losing his parliamentary seat didn’t draw any slight attention or even just one line on media.

His political tormentor, Mr. Orot was later appointed State Minister for Works but Parliament’s Appointment Committee flatly rejected him due to questionable academic papers.

When Forum for Democratic Change unveiled its roadmap for party presidential elections in May 2017, the expected serious candidates were incumbent Gen. Mugisha Muntu and Secretary General, Nandala Mafabi.

Mafabi however didn’t nominate and many political pundits astutely congratulated Muntu already when names like for Mubarak Munyagwa, Patrick Amuriat Oboi and Moses Bakubira appeared in the same race.

The FDC presidential campaign landscape was however drastically altered in September when the former party president and founder, Dr. Besigye personally and actively joined the camp of Amuriat.

The name Amuriat who had been described by head of Muntu campaign, Ibrahim Semujju Nganda as a villager only known by his clan members, started quickly becoming a force to reckon with in FDC mainly among the radical members.

The election turned out to be a clash of ideologies between the moderates under Muntu who believe in strategies as opposed to staunch Besigye supporters who subscribe to radical approach in attempts to dislodge President Museveni.

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Amuriat, commonly known as POA later gained the status of a serious candidate thanks to the big names like Dr. Besigye; National Chairman, Waswa Birigwa; Secretary General, Nandala Mafabi; Vice President, Joyce Ssebugwao and others who joined him and indeed against Muntu.

Even with the direct support from the above names for Amuriat, Muntu was still prospected to win the race.

The country was however shocked on November 24th 2017 when what was ordinarily a joke of the century exceptionally became a reality and Amuriat was named the president of the country’s biggest opposition party. He defeated Muntu with a momentous 178 votes by bagging 641 votes from the delegates against 463.

Other two candidates, Moses Byamugisha and Malcom Matsiko garnered two votes.

Amuriat’s victory can only be compared to that of Donald Trump in 2016 that many Americans still can’t easily come to terms that he is actually their president.

It is however widely viewed that the win is for Dr. Besigye who sharply disagree with Muntu on the methods of playing politics.

 

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