NRM’s Workers’ Representative in Parliament, Dr. Sam Lyomoki has written to the party Secretary General, Justine Kasule Lumumba challenging the party’s “attempt” to front President Yoweri Museveni as the NRM’s sole candidate for the 2021 general elections.
Last week, Lumumba unveiled the party’s roadmap for the 2019-2021 which spelt out the key political activities for the NRM between now and the general elections as well as their time frames. These activities include the registration for national identity cards, expediting the relevant electoral related laws, nominations, primaries for candidates as well as launching the manifesto.
However, Lyomoki says the roadmap is silent on when the process of choosing the NRM Presidential candidate will take place, which according to him points to “an attempt to orchestrate and smuggle into the upcoming 2021 elections the concept of sole candidate”.
“To many progressives in the party, your wording appears to be a veiled attempt to orchestrate and smuggle into the upcoming 2021 elections the concept of sole candidate, an illegal, self-serving and undemocratic practice that has been forced onto the party for long,” Lyomoki stated in his letter to the NRM Secretary General, Kasule Lumumba.
He contends that the decision is contrary to the party Constitution Article 39.1 which states that “subject to the provisions of the Constitution, all members of NRM who meet national legal requirements shall be eligible to become candidates for NRM at various levels”.
The legislator added that the Constitution further stipulates that “for every elective national and local government office, there shall be primaries held within NRM to determine NRM candidate”.
“Clearly, there is no place for sole candidate in our party constitution and indeed in any civilized democratic institution in this modern age,” Lyomoki said on Tuesday while addressing the press at Parliament.
He said that it is very unfortunate that the move restricts people like him who would wish to stand against President Museveni within the party.
“It would have been more democratic for the party candidate to be elected by all members of the party just like the case for the party flag bearers for the Members of Parliament and other elected offices,” Lyomoki said.
He noted that the idea that the NRM Central Executive Committee (CEC) composed of about 20 people can decide for about 20 million party members is the most blatant and reckless abuse of democracy.
He branded members of the CEC as being compromised and egocentric.
“As a person committed to the revival of our party together with and supported by the majority of 20 million silent and ignored members of the NRM party, we shall do everything within our means to defend our destiny, posterity, rights and the constitution including pursuing this matter to its logical conclusion in Courts of law.” Lyomoki noted.
He has asked Lumumba to prevail over President Museveni to see sense in consolidating the historic contribution he has already made and that he may all together abandon the scheme of ‘sole candidature’ for the position of NRM Presidential candidate.
Lyomoki as well noted that he is in touch with ‘People Power’s’ Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine who has pledged to help enhance his campaigns during the campaign period.
This isn’t the first time Lyomoki has expressed interests in standing against President Museveni although he has never taken any step towards that challenge which has forced many people to simply regard him as a joker.
The first time Lyomoki promised to stand against Museveni was in 2011 which declaration he repeated in 2015, only for him not to attend the Party’s National conference.