President Museveni has vowed to initiate and facilitate criminal proceedings against the candidates involved in rigging, intimidation and bribery during the concluded National Resistance Movement party primary elections.
Museveni, who is also NRM Chairman, released a statement on Saturday evening saying it is very easy to gather evidence against forgery, cause prosecution and jailing of unscrupulous candidates for up to 5 years.
“Unfortunately, there are shallow people who resort to shallow schemes to steal the power of the people. These do the following: bribing, intimidation, altering declaration forms, even attacking and injuring people, using the underage to vote, importing voters from other areas etc,” said Museveni.
Adding: “These are all shallow schemes that are easy to expose. The 2nd Law of Moses says: “Thou shalt not worship idols”. The emphasis put on DR forms is worshipping idols.”
The warning comes against the backdrop of unprecedented violence in different parts of the country due to alleged electoral malpractices during the NRM Primaries.
In Ntungamo, several people were injured in political violence.
Some former MPs including Mbarara’s Tusiime have condemned that manner in which the polls were conducted, saying people were picked from neighbouring districts to vote.
In Kyankwanzi District, riots are raging apparently over a rigged election.
The road between Hoima and Kyankwanzi is blocked.
Several roadblocks are manned by rowdy youth.
Museveni noted that the falsified declaration forms, from the open exercise where voters lined up behind the candidates or their agents, are easily going to be detected.
“It is an exercise in futility for anybody to create a new reality on DR forms that is not in the villages. Anybody who participated in such transparent criminality commits fraud and the sentence for fraud is 3-5 years in prison,” he said.
Museveni appealed to the candidates, who believed they were cheated, to gather evidence and hand them to Police.
“Therefore, the aggrieved candidates, get facts from a sample of villages from your village agents, who must speak truthfully otherwise they will also be charged with aiding and abetting a fraud as well as making false declarations, the Police will cross-check and criminal proceedings will be initiated,” he said.
He stated that even those who participated in bribery, intimidation and other electoral malpractices are also going to be followed by the law.
“The same with other crimes- bribery, intimidation, assaults etc.; just get facts. We should not allow crooks to pollute our massive force that you saw yesterday. Down with crooks,” said Museveni.
The President concluded that it his Constitutional mandate to make sure the crooks are brought to book.
“I am not Tanga Odoi but my entering from the criminal side, which is my Constitutional duty as President, will help Tanga Odoi. Help us with the facts. Congratulations again,” he concluded.
Several areas in the country registered voter bribery, rigging and other malpractices.