Wednesday February 3 2016

Drama as Opposition refuse to defect to NRM

Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda greets Mr

Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda greets Mr Ahamad Washaki, the Sebei region NRM mobiliser at the meeting. Mr Bashir Chelimo, the coordinator for Go Forward Youth in Sebei region, said the NRM leaders had mobilised people in the region to attend the meeting with the Prime Minister to discuss land issues but upon reaching the venue, they were paraded as defectors. PHOTO BY YAHUDU KITUNZI.  

By YAHUDU KITUNZI & FRED WAMBEDE

KAPCHORWA. Drama broke out at the National Resistance Movement (NRM) meeting in Kapchorwa Town at the weekend after Opposition supporters, who had been paraded as defectors before Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda and NRM Vice Chairman Hajj Moses Kigongo, refused to hand over their party cards.
The group comprising supporters of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) and Go Forward had been mobilised by the district NRM administration to be officially welcomed into the ruling party by the top NRM leadership.

How it started
The meeting turned chaotic when Hajj Kigongo announced that the defectors should come forward and hand over their party cards so as to become NRM cadres.
“My brothers and sisters, you have made a good decision at a right time. Come forward and we officially welcome you into the NRM family,” Hajj Kigongo invited the Opposition members.
However, the purported defectors defiantly remained in their seats and refused to move forward, prompting Prime Minister Rugunda’s intervention but the Opposition members still held their ground.

Mr Bashir Chelimo, the coordinator for Go Forward Youth in Sebei region, said the NRM leaders had mobilised people in the region to attend the meeting with the Prime Minister to discuss land issues but upon reaching the venue, they were paraded as defectors.
“We were surprised that we from Opposition were being referred to as defectors. We want to denounce this in the strongest terms possible and we are still in our parties. We were duped,” Mr Chelimo said.

The head of Go Forward in Kapchorwa sub-region and MP for Kween County, Mr Kisos Chemaswet, said the NRM leaders wanted to create an impression that they had done effective mobilisation and the Opposition supporters were crossing to the NRM.
“These are the people who deceive President Museveni to give them money for such activities when there is nothing they are doing on the ground. The NRM supporters must learn to be faithful to President Museveni. The truth is that he has been deceived. He no longer has support of the people,” said Mr Chemaswet.

Hajj Kigongo said NRM doesn’t force anybody to join the party and urged the charged Opposition supporters to stop shouting at the meeting.
“Let us learn how to solve our problems amicably instead of shouting. We should not be bitter over nothing,” Hajj Kigongo pleaded, after failing to get FDC party cards or T-shirts.
He later blasted people who accuse President Mr Museveni of overstaying in power.
“First blame yourself for overstaying on this earth before you can blame President Museveni for overstaying in power, how has he overstayed?” he rhetorically asked.

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