NRM aspirants protest deletion of their names from party register

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The National Resistance Movement (NRM) Secretary General, Kasule Lumumba

Kanungu, Uganda | URN | Tension is mounting in Kanungu District following the deletion of the names of four aspirants from the National Resistance Movement (NRM) party voter’s register.

Those affected are James Kaberuka Ruggi, the Kinkizi West Member of Parliament, Caleb Tumwesimire Kipande, Zepher Mugisha and Kenneth Tumuhamye, all aspirants for the NRM party ticket for the LC V Chairperson’s ticket.

The four have since petitioned the NRM Party Secretary General, Justine Kasule Lumumba seeking an explanation on how their names were deleted from the party register.

“We have confirmed that our names have been crossed from our village NRM register yet we are Aspiring candidates on different positions in the forthcoming NRM primary elections. It’s our humble request to know from your office the reasons for crossing our names and we kindly request for intervention in this serious matter,” reads the July 25th, 2020 petition to Justine Kasule Lumumba, the NRM Secretary General.

The petition is copied to the NRM National Chairperson, party Electoral Commission Chairperson, Kanungu Resident District Commissioner, District Police Commander and District party Registrar. James Kaberuka Ruggi, the Kinkizi West MP told URN that the decision to delete their names from the party voter’s register is the handwork of some people who fear the voice of the majority. 

He says several maneuvers were employed in the 2015 party primaries and 2016 general elections but the perpetrators were defeated. “We shall not only defeat them but we are going to expose their dirty dealings, which are aimed at stifling the people’s voice,” Kaberuka said.

Emmanuel Dombo, the Director of Information and Communication NRM Secretariat told URN that they are yet to receive the petition from the affected aspirants. “We shall receive it and study it and that is when we shall issue official communication,” Dombo said.

The Kanungu Resident District Commissioner, Hajji Shaffigue Ssekandi held a closed door meeting with the affected people on Sunday and advised them to contact the party top leadership before it is too late. Kanungu District NRM Chairperson, Godfrey Karabenda told our reporter that he isn’t sure at what point the names were crossed from the register.

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He said they have forwarded the matter to the NRM Secretariat for investigation and management. Karabenda however said that it is alleged that the affected persons had at some point left the party.

In September 2019, politicians from Kanungu who are said to have left the party met President Yoweri Museveni at his Rwakitura home who welcomed them back to NRM and asked them to work for the party.

Early this month, President Museveni also held a meeting with 27 NRM Members of Parliament including James Kaberuka who opposed the lifting of the presidential age limit from the constitution. Museveni is alleged to have forgiven the legislators and allowed them to fully participate in the party primaries.

In 2015, the then Kanungu NRM District Registrar, John Byaruhanga was on the spot for announcing wrong results during primaries. It took the intervention of President, Yoweri Museveni to order the NRM Electoral Commission (EC) to review the results and announce the right winners.