The Electoral Commission has designated December 14 as polling day for the Parliamentary by-election for the Igara East constituency. The process set to cost Shs 399 million will begin this week with an update exercise of the voter register.
The Igara East Parliamentary seat fell vacant following a court nullification of the election of former MP, NRM’s Andrew Martial by court of Appeal citing voter bribery and uttering defamatory statements. As a result, the Electoral Commission is required by the law to conduct a by-election within 60 days after notification from Clerk to Parliament on the occurrence of the vacancy.
“We received the notice on 17th October 2017, and therefore, the statutory deadline for holding the by-election is December 17. Accordingly, the Electoral Commission has approved the electoral programme for this by-election,” the Electoral Commission Chairman Justice Simon Byabakama said.
The voters register will be updated and displayed within each of the 27 parishes between November 13 and 22 to enable voters to crosscheck and report any inconsistencies including names that don’t qualify to be on the register.
“During the display, voters are urged to turn up in large numbers and check for the correctness of their particulars, and confirm that photographs appear against correct particulars.”
Voters are further urged to report to the display officer: the dead, the non-citizens, the under-aged, and those who belong to another Parish, so that they are removed from the Register.
During this display period, the Commission will also issue temporary Voter Location Slips (VLS) to voters, to enable them conveniently locate their respective polling station on polling day.
Eligible candidates for the Parliamentary seat will be duly nominated on November 22 and 23 at the Bushenyi district headquarters while campaigns are scheduled to last 17 days beginning November 26.
“All candidates are urged to observe law and order during this exercise and to conduct their campaign meetings in accordance with the harmonized programme. Hate language will not be tolerated at all,” Byabakama said.
Meanwhile, the Commission has banned fundraising activities effective November 3 ahead of the by-election saying this will “allow a leveled-ground for candidates in the race”.