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Rukungiri by-election: Museveni, Opposition politicians rally supporters

RUKUNGIRI– President Museveni on Monday campaigned in Rukungiri District for Ms Winfred Masiko, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) candidate, who is trying to reclaim her Parliamentary seat.

Ms Masiko lost the seat in March following the Court of Appeal nullification of her victory citing irregularities in the 2016 elections.

Mr Museveni campaigned in Nyakishenyi, Nyarushanje and Buyanja sub counties.
“Vote for our NRM party candidate in this by-election and leave alone those politicians that target to tear apart NRM party.

Failure to vote our NRM party in this by-election, you will be failing yourself,” Mr Museveni said at Nyakisoroza Church of Uganda play ground in Nyakishenyi. “Please lend me a hand and back Ms Winfred Masiko.”

Five people including Forum for Democratic Change’s Ms Betty Muzanira and former State Minister for Public Service, Ms Sezi Mbaguta (Independent) are in the race.

Mr Museveni hailed Ms Masiko and Ms Paula Turyahikayo (Rubabo MP) for voting to lift the presidential age limit in December last year.

He defended the over Shs5 billion donation he gave to over 100 groups in Rukungiri on April 15 saying the community is orphaned because it is led by opposition politicians.

“When I go to the garden, I do my part and complete it. After realising that our people in Rukunguri were orphaned because some legislators are in the opposition and wanted me out. I organised a donation to facilitate some groups of people to demonstrate that together with can fight poverty, and that is not the end,” Mr Museveni said.

He asked Parliament to streamline laws on tendering process saying some government projects such as road construction have delayed because the losers of such tenders use the “democracy that was ushered in by the NRM to protest the process.”

“Parliament should help us and amend the law so that the winners of such tenders are given opportunity to begin works and when the losers prove that the process of awarding the tenders was not proper, they can be compensated,” Mr Museveni said.

Opposition politicians upbeat

Opposition leaders have rallied Rukungiri voters to exhibit their opposition against the lifting of the presidential age limit, by voting Ms Muzanira.

They were led by former FDC presidents Rtd Gen Mugisha Muntu and Dr Kizza Besigye, the current leader of the party, Mr Partrick Amuriat Oboi and the leader of the opposition in Parliament Ms Winnie Kizza.

 Kyadondo East MP, Mr Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine is among several opposition leaders who are campaigning in Rukungiri.

 “I call upon all the people of Rukungiri, whether NRM or FDC or any other party, to all vote for Betty Muzanira. This will be the beginning of change, a vote of no confidence against those who touched the Constitution. The whole country is waiting for you, for your voice and this will send a clear message to the country.” Mr Amuriat said during a rally at Rukungiri Taxi Park on Monday.

Mr Kyagulanyi asked the youth to show up in big numbers and vote for the FDC candidate.

Gen Muntu asked voters not to fear soldiers deployed in the district since they can be defeated with their uniforms and ammunition.

“What I tell you, we once had those uniforms and body guards. Do not fear those police and army officers deployed here. They actually fear you. Wake up early in the morning cast your vote and stay at the polling station until it is counted,” Gen Muntu said.

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