Last week, Wilfred Niwagaba the Shadow Attorney General (AG) legislator was granted leave by Parliament to table constitutional amendments some of which aim to reform electoral processes.
However, even before they are returned for debate, Patrick Oboi Amuriat the president of Uganda’s largest opposition party, Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has predicted doom.
Speaking to ChimpReports yesterday, Amuriat a former Kumi Municipality MP said without a change of heart in President Yoweri Museveni’s way of doing things, nothing much should be expected.
He cited the non-partisan Citizen’s Manifesto of 2016 which he says was thwarted before going to parliament on the pretext of little time.
“Of course as expected again Mr. Museveni and the regime in power did not like them because they touched the core of what would ensure a free and fair and credible election which they do not want. The situation has remained the same and therefore to expect so much from Mr. Museveni is like having a wild dream”, he said.
Nevertheless, Amuriat heralded Niwagaba’s initiative but predicted that his proposals are likely not to go through because of the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) legislators who are not only dominant but subservient as well.
“The majority in parliament is NRM, those MPs are in the back pocket of Museveni they can easily be intimidated, bribed, threatened with loss of positions and all they will do is to do the work of Mr. Museveni to sustain him in power and those reforms are just going to fall through”, Amuriat observes.
Until, the composition of the Electoral Commission is addressed, he says no tangible inroads will be achieved on this subject.
Worse still, he points out that government’s reform bills recently tabled by Deputy Attorney General Mwesigwa Rukutana gloss over underlying electoral issues but do not postulate any cure.
Notably, Amuriat says government’s proposals make no mention of political party financing, role of the army in the election and power of the incumbency among many others.
For now, Amuriat points out, emphasis is on reclaiming their 2016 victory that was snatched from them.
“So for us the elections of the 2016 elections still remain unresolved therefore there wasn’t a need for discussion to happen. The opportunity was not given to us and we were left with no alternative but to mobilize the population for regime change, to reclaim our victory”.