President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni has congratulated the Uganda Peoples Congress (UPC) party for winning the Oyam North Constituency by-election.
The by-election was won by UPC’s Dr Eunice Apio Otuko. She defeated her closest rival, Samuel Okello Engola of NRM.
Apio won with 15,781 votes against Engola’s 15,161 votes. Freddy Newton Okello of the Forum for Democratic Change(FDC) party obtained 714 votes, while Daniel Okello of the National Unity Platform got 403 votes.
“Congratulations to our allies, the UPC and for the candidate, Eunice Apio, for winning the Oyam by-elections. Congratulations also to the NRM and the candidate Engola Junior because the difference between the two was very small,” the president said in a statement on the Oyam by-election.
He further demanded action against officials who were implicated in ‘stealing’ votes in the by-election.
“If UPC cheated in any way, the NRM can follow the legal channels. I condemn and demand action against the law-breakers that are said to have ticked the ballots on behalf of the voters. This is treason and no NRM should ever take part in that crime,” he said.
Below is the president’s full statement.
Ugandans and, especially the Bazzukulu,
Congratulations to our allies, the UPC and for the candidate, Eunice Apio, for winning the Oyam by-elections. Congratulations also to the NRM and the candidate Engola Junior because the difference between the two was very small.
If UPC cheated in any way, the NRM can follow the legal channels. I condemn and demand action against the law-breakers that are said to have ticked the ballots on behalf of the voters. This is treason and no NRM should ever take part in that crime.
It is the Opposition that has been doing that around Kampala, with the incompetent NRM officials failing to catch them. If the voters cannot do so genuinely and influence the choice of the candidates and Parties, then how can the People guarantee their future and discipline leaders? This is why the NRM went to the bush. Vote rigging, bribery, violence, lies, etc., must be banished from our elections.
I insist that all voting must be electronic, using thumbprints. How, then, does the pre-ticking come in? Are some people still allowing non-electronic voting?
UPC has been, in recent years, positive and not disruptive and so has DP been. That is why I congratulate them, although I would have preferred the NRM to win. Nevertheless, both the UPC and the DP should pay attention to what I said at Icheme recently.
The sabotage of the UNC by the DP in 1954 and the sabotage of the UNLF in 1980 by both the UPC and the DP, denied Uganda a broad-based political force that could guarantee peace in Uganda, the way Tanu and Afro-Shirazi did in Tanzania. The two of them, again, since 1994 (the CA time), have been trying to sabotage the broad-based NRM but the People of Uganda have rejected their efforts.
Therefore, the surviving UPC and DP members -people like Rwakasisi, John Kawanga, and Joyce Ssebugwawo (KY) – should sensitize their members about the historical mistakes that disadvantaged Uganda.
What would have Uganda lost if the UNC in 1954 or the UNLF in 1980, had remained united? What would have Uganda, East Africa, Africa and even the individual actors (Muteesa, Obote, Amin, Ben Kiwanuka on the Uganda side and elders from Kenya and Tanzania -Mzee Kenyatta, Mwalimu Nyerere, etc.) lost if the East African Federation had been actualized in 1963 as the Declaration of Intent proclaimed? So many lost opportunities and a lot of unnecessary trouble.
The NRM in Oyam and the rest of the Country should concentrate on wealth and get away from the sterile and nonsensical politics of cheap popularity -giving money, attending burials, etc.
In Oyam, I drove for 27 km, from Col. Engola’s home to Icheme and to Otwal, looking at the different sides of the road. I only saw some little patches of Muhogo (cassava) and maize. That is why at Otwal, I asked the question: “Cente (sente), tye kwene?”- “From where do you get money?”
What has Operation Wealth Creation been doing in that area? No coffee, no fruits, no poultry, no piggery, no dairy and no fish farming. In other words, no PDM.
As I told the Oyam People, I am going back in August to get an answer to that question. The chairman told me about watermelons and soya beans. Those are not part of the activities for PDM. What is the cura (Kibaro)?
I also noticed some irresponsible people encroaching on the wetlands. They must get out. We need the swamps as dero (granary, store of water) for irrigation; not for rice and crops. Crops are for dry land.
Towards the end of next week, I will make a broadcast on anti-terrorism and crime. Stay tuned.
I am here in Kisozi, deworming my cattle. Yesterday, I was at a point where I could watch Katonga Bridge (Gomba side- upstream). We the Gomba and allied People of Butambala, Ssembabule, etc., are happy to have given Uganda and East Africa an alternative route when the Katonga Bridge, near the Equator, flooded. I saw so many trucks, buses, etc., yesterday crossing the Katonga Bridge of Gomba. The cattle industry of Uganda will be a big money earner for dairy and beef.
While there, I got the sad news of the death of Aponye, our big supporter and active economic actor. Condolences to his family and the Ugandans in general. May his soul rest in eternal peace.
YOWERI K. MUSEVENI
BULERA HILL, NEAR KISOZI AND MADDU, GOMBA.