By Monica Kobusiinge
Kampala: The Katikkiro of Buganda Kingdom, Charles Peter Mayiga, has challenged the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) political party on the importance of organising free and fair elections as one way of strengthening democracy in the country.
Mayiga made the remarks while meeting the NRM officials led by the Vice Chairperson of NRM central region, Godfrey Kiwanda Ssuubi at Kingdom’s quarter guards Bulange Mengo.
Mayiga condemned the acts of violence that dominated the recently concluded NRM primaries calling for immediate intervention to ensure that such incidents don’t happen in 2021 general election.
He tasked the ruling party to come up with the immediate solution, adding that the enforcement of the electoral process to ensure free and fair elections is the only gift that can be given to Ugandans.
“The only wealth that NRM can give to Ugandans is to ensure that there is a free and fair election in all the internal electoral process in all political parties and at the national level,” Katikkiro said.
“I don’t think that there is any kind of wealth that NRM can give to Uganda other than ensuring peaceful, free and fair elections,” he said.
Mayiga added that tension and violence are always caused by what is seen by the pubic as an uneven or outright irregular electoral process.
“If there is day light voter bribery, if electoral officials are openly seen tinkering with voter results, if firearms are brought out to intimidate or even kill voters, in such situations, voters are likely to dispute election results either at the party primaries or at the national level,” he said.
In his remarks, Kiwanda also condemned the incidents of violence, adding that the party will find all the possible ways to address such problems before 2021 general election adding that there are some members in the party who misuse the power given to them hence causing such mess and disorganization.
“The violence we saw in our party primaries sometimes is brought by leaders, you will find we are the leaders in the party and at the same time you are the one in charge of organizing elections in your district, sometimes you find he or she is also a candidate in the same district,” Kiwanda said.
In the same vein, Mayiga revealed that Buganda as a Kingdom will not be standing behind any candidate in the forthcoming general elections, adding that the Kingdom would rally behind who whoever will emerge the winner after next year’s general elections as long as they love and respect the Kingdom.
“We therefore ask all contestants from various political parties as they prepare their manifestos to indicate their positions on the already known Buganda’s Development strategies,” Mayiga added.
On the other hand, Mayiga applauded President Yoweri Museveni and the cabinet for returning the vintage Rolls Royce which was Ssekabaka’s Mutesa 1st official vehicle.
“We are in the process of restoring it to its original state and we hope that Government will support us having kept this vehicle for quite a long period of time.”