EC cautions Kagoma by-election candidates

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The chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC), Justice Simon Byabakama Mugenyi, has warned contenders for the Kagoma parliamentary by-election seat against breaking electoral rules, saying this time they will be dealt with accordingly.

Speaking during a consultative meeting at Buwenge Youth Centre in Jinja District on Monday, Justice Byabakama told district security agencies and political party representatives that the Kagoma Constituency by-election will be held on May 11.

He said cases of bribery, ballot stuffing and voter intimidation will be treated with urgency and culprits will suffer the consequences.

The Kagoma parliamentary seat fell vacant after the Court of Appeal nullified the election Moses Walyomu (NRM), following an appeal by his rival Alex Brandon Kintu.

Mr Kintu stood as an independent but lost the election to Mr Walyomu. He filed an election petition in court detailing election fraud including bribery and voter intimidation that he said unjustly swung the result in favour of his rival.

Justice Byabakama asked security agencies (particularly the police) to arrest hooligans, party mobilisers and even electoral commission officials who breach electoral rules adding that particular attention should be geared towards curbing bribery and voter intimidation.

In his submission, the deputy chairperson of the NRM Electoral Commission, Mr John Kigyagi Arimpa, said every stakeholder has a role to play in ensuring the credibility of the election.
The EC representative in charge of Busoga/Kiira region, Mr Stephen Tashobya, said candidates should not participate in any form of fundraising, avoid defaming rivals even in the media and ensure that their supporters do not deface rival candidates’ posters.

The deputy Kiira Regional police commander, Mr Jerome Onesimus Mwesigwa, said police will not tolerate any party branded vehicles especially those without number plates.

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