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FDC Slams New Electoral Reforms

Opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party has come out rebuking the newly introduced electoral reforms, saying they will not lead to free, fair and transparent elections.

Last week, the Attorney General William Byaruhanga tabled the long awaited Electoral reforms in Parliament as the 2021 General elections draw closer.

Some of the reforms include voting of security forces 5 days before the actual polling date, banning cameras at polling stations, the independents not forming alliances with other political parties and pressure groups among others.

Addressing the press at party headquarters in Najjanankumbi, the FDC deputy spokesperson John Kikonyogo said the reforms that FDC thought should be included are; need of a new independent and impartial Electoral commission (EC) whose selection of commissioners and staff must follow an open process of application; public hearing and scrutiny conducted by judicial service commission, among others.

On the issue of security forces voting 5 days before actual polling date, Kikonyogo said it is intended to force them to vote for the incumbent.

“In the last election, FDC won in all barracks. Therefore, they are doing this to force security agencies to vote for the incumbent or not to vote at all,” he said.

Kikonyogo added that the military should have no involvement in the Electoral process and should remain focused on its constitutional duty of defending and securing Ugandan borders.

“The police personnel deployed to provide security, law and order during the election period should be placed under the supervision of and direction of Electoral commission not the IGP”

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Kikonyogo further called for the establishment of a mechanism to monitor and prevent raids for funds from the Central Bank, Ministries and International assistance accounts in the period before and during election campaigns.

On the issue of disallowing cameras at polling stations, he said EC will gazette ghost polling stations and elections will not be transparent.

“You cannot abolish cameras at polling stations and announce results to 5 people who we don’t know. Electoral commission will gazette ghost polling stations if cameras are not allowed”

FDC also called on the repealing of public order management Act (POMA), amendment of police Act (2006) to allow freedom to organize and assemble.

 

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