The opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party leaders have asked voters in the forthcoming Bukimbiri county parliamentary elections in Kisoro district to shun the National Resistance Movement (NRM) candidate because of the repeated lies by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to tarmac tourism roads and establish the John Kale Institute.
In 2017, Museveni promised to construct the John Kale Institute in memory of the late John Muhima Kalekezi, the father of the former Inspector-General of Police Edward Kale Kahiyura, for his role in instilling the spirit of Pan-Africanism amongst Ugandans. In the same year, Museveni laid a foundation stone for the construction of the institute on 168 acres of land at Rwivovo village in Nyakabande sub-county.
He also promised to tarmac Kisoro-Mgahinga and Kisoro-Rubuguri tourism roads. But to date, nothing has been done. On Sunday, FDC party leaders led by their president, Patrick Amuriat Oboi, Nandala Mafabi, the secretary general, Jack Crissy Sabitti, the National FDC Chairman of the Elderly Council, and Roland Mugume Kagyinda, the former Rukungiri Municipality Member of parliament, joined the campaigns of James Owebeyi Mugyemani, the FDC candidate for the Bukimbiri county parliamentary by-elections.
Addressing voters in Rubuguri town council, Nandala noted that despite the fact that Kisoro has been an NRM party stronghold for many years, residents are yet to gain from the overwhelming support. Nandala asked voters to think twice and question why the tourist roads are not tarmacked yet, yet Museveni promised them long ago.
He said that the roads, especially Kisoro-Rubuguri, have remained dusty during the sunny period and very slippery during the rainy season despite connecting to Bwindi Impenetrable National Park. He also noted that the empty promise of John Kale Institute construction indicates that NRM takes Kisoro voters as ladders for their personal gains.
Owebeyi noted that instead of demanding vital services from the government, NRM leaders spend their time fighting him. He says that there is no reason for Bukimbiri county voters to clap for the NRM party because it has lied to them enough.
Owebeyi is contesting against independents Asgario Turyagyenda and Edward Mutabazi and the NRM’s Eddie Kwizera Wagahungu. Voting in Bukimbiri is scheduled to take place on August 11, 2022. The by-election stems from the Court of Appeal’s decision to nullify the victory of Kwizera, citing irregularities following a successful application by Owebeyi.
In his application, Owebeyi argued that although the candidate’s photos and party symbols that appeared on the ballot were genuine, they carried different names. The ballot papers carried the names of Arthur Kazoora Atuzarirwe as the NRM flag bearer, Didas Byaruhanga Kagyinda as the FDC flag bearer, and Victor Atwiine and Donzio Kahonda Mugabe as independent candidates, yet none of them were from the area.