Writer: Simon Peter Asiimwe
The political environment in Uganda is steadily hitting a climax with the youth elections under the special interest groups that were conducted on 17th March 2020.
The National Youth elections in most parts of the country were marred by allegations of cheating leading to chaos, that attracted the swift intervention of the Uganda Police to deter bloodshed and restore calm.
attracting the intervention of police to restore calm despite the Electoral Commission saying the exercise was largely successful.
The Electoral Commission headed by Justice Simon Byabakama has earlier announced that all elections will be held scientifically with clear observance of the Ministry of Health Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).
The Electoral Commission scientific elections directive was flouted by the rowdy youth and community members who were also divided along party lines giving an unprecedented outlook of what might happen in 2021.
There were visibly no COVID-19 precautionary control gadgets such as standby ambulances, hand washing sanitizers, water, soap and temperature guns at any of the polling stations countrywide.
Candidates, their voters and electoral commission officials were neither keeping social distance nor wearing masks, something that is very worrying considering that 2021 elections will have way more voters and candidates actively participating in the process.
This comes at a time when various Members of Parliament and Cabinet ministers have been sighted holding processions and mobilization rallies in contravention of the same regulations that they themselves passed in the August House just days back.
Also strange is that as places of worship remain closed following President Yoweri Museveni’s directives but politicians are using the alter for partisan politics with hundreds of their supporters congested in the churches with no masks and social distancing.
With increasing cases of COVID-19 being recorded daily and fifteen deaths so far reported, it creates a very big doubt if the Electoral Commission is ready to ensure that the 2020/21
campaigns are held in strict adherence to the Ministry of Health SOPs irrespective of the political party one belongs to or the position that they hold in government.
Walk the Talk Uganda Electoral Commission!