The ruling National Resistance Movement has received a total of 373 petitions challenging the recently concluded party primaries for parliamentary flagbearers held a week ago.
Addressing journalists at the party headquarters on Sunday, NRM’s director in charge of legal affairs, Oscar Kihika said following the September 4, polls, they received 463 petitions which he said have subsequently been consolidated into 373 petitions.
“In the result, the total tally is 373 petitions from 10 districts around the country which registered several complaints. On Monday(tomorrow), we shall ask respondents whose results are challenged to respond to the accusations within three days which will elapse on Thursday,”Kihiika said.
The NRM director in charge of legal affairs explained that a tram of 14 lawyers has been put in place to look into the petitions before they are disposed of. “Each of the lawyers will be holding a hearing where each party will present its case . The lawyers will then make recommendations to the electoral commission which will make a final decision on whether to cancel the results or carry out a fresh tallying process,”Kihiika said.
President Museveni recently said a panel of elders in will be set up in every region where complaints will be lodged by aggrieved party members to help solve issues arising out of the primaries.
“My advice is that we should set up panels of elders per zone. As NRM members you don’t have to riot or quarrel, just write a petition and send it to the panel,” Museveni said.
A day to the NRM primaries, President Museveni, who is also the national party chairman, directed that all members who are not in the party register should be registered and allowed to vote.
“Therefore, in the exercise of the powers granted to the chairman under Article 14 of the Constitution, I hereby offer guidance that all members of NRM whose names appear on the register shall be allowed to vote. Any NRM member whose name is not on the party register shall be immediately added to the register and permitted to vote if the person is 18 and above,” Museveni said in a September 2, 2020 letter.
Museveni said village executive committees should verify that the person added onto the register is a member of NRM in that village and that where there are no registers; the village committee shall verify and register all members eligible to vote.
However, following the chaos that manifested the just concluded ruling party elections, a number of candidates, mostly those who lost have since blamed their losses on Museveni’s directive.