Bunyoro leaders set out formula for new electoral reforms

Alled Ronald Akugizibwe the Buruli Member of Parliament

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Mr. Aled Ronald Akugizibwe the Buruli Member of Parliament say, the electoral reforms have delayed being formulated

Leaders in the Bunyoro region have set out a formula to engage local citizens in the proposal of change in political and constitutional reforms in the country. Bunyoro leaders further propose changes in constitution reforms be delivered and debated in parliament and the constitution review commission.

Mrs Matsiko Kabakumba the Masindi NRM chairperson says the electoral reforms should be taken seriously by the people to fill the gap in electoral laws. “I will also further submit these reforms to Uganda law society for further review,” Mrs. Kabakumba said.

Mr Aled Ronald Akugizibwe the Buruli Member of Parliament say, the electoral reforms have delayed being formulated. “Most people don't know the electoral cycle but rather consider election only during the year of voting,” Mr. Akugizibwe said.

Mr Joab Businge the Masindi Municipality Member of Parliament says penalties should be made on the people caught rigging votes and more reforms committed to transforming the voters. “The reforms which will be collected from the people should be implemented by the executive arm of government so that it can increase democracy in the electoral process,” Mr Businge said.

Mr Businge wants the new reforms on the unregulated electoral funding without candidates declaring the sources of the funds used, and the reduction of Members of Parliament to two legislatures per district.

Mr Kanaginagi Ateenyi, the Masindi vice NRM chairperson says there should be reforms to limit sycophancy and greed for power among political parties.

Mr Kanaginagi Ateenyi suggested the election start from down and L.C V and MPs be held on the same day.

“Among other reforms I have submitted are L.C III and councilors who should have minimum qualifications of Advanced level of education, I also want some districts to be re-emerged to avoid public expenditure,” Mr Kanaginagi said. l also submitted every district to have only two MPs, a female, and a male to avoid more government expenditure” Mr Kanaginagi added.

Mrs Evelyn Ayebale, the Masindi female youth councilor, says the new reforms should aim at curbing motorized politics, which has been a challenge to the youth. Mrs Ayebale wants an increase in the number of youth representatives in parliament and district councils from two to four since some districts are massive.

Mrs Ayebale further wants the government to scrap off the nomination fees on all political positions to allow the youth to fully participate in all elective positions. Mr. Innocent Turyahikayo the head of the Democratic Party in the region wants civic education on electoral democracy to become a right of all citizens. Mr. Rogers Kanti the Bunyoro region National Unity Platform (NUP) representative wants the reforms to regulate the powers of the president and regulate his influence in the electoral process.

Mrs. Maureen Kyomuhendo the coordinator forum for women in democracy FOWED in Masindi says, FOWED plans to engage members of the public to express their views in political and constitutional reforms which will later be tabled in parliament and the office of the constitution review committee for review and internalization.

"We shall seek views of the public targeting the most local people on the political and constitutional reforms which we shall later table to parliament and constitutional review committee for consideration,” Mrs Maureen Kyomuhendo said.

Mr. Paul Mulindwa the Executive Director of KCSON say they have started generating ideas on political and constitutional reforms by asking Bunyoro leaders to present their views on the reforms.

At the launch of the citizen's debate on political and constitutional reforms at the country inn hotel in Masindi, leaders in Bunyoro Mr. Biira Nerser Kiwanuka the executive director of recreation for development and peace say, all previous constitution and political reforms have failed to be implemented because they have been targeting to remove NRM and President Museveni in power and have not been accepted by Government.

"We have also been advocating for these reforms only during the election period, but now this will yield because we have started early enough,” Mr. Kiwanuka said.

According to Mr. Biira the reforms will increase the full participation of the public in the electoral process preparing for the next general elections.

Mr. Ismail Kusemererwa, the executive director Mid-western ant corruption coalition says the new reforms should focus on poor voter education and show the citizens why they have to vote.

“I think it will give more confidence among the people to participate in the next general elections.

 According to Mrs Maureen Kyomuhendo, the aim of pushing for the new constitution and governance reforms is aimed at increasing voter interests and a need to include reforms on the election of youth with every sub-regions being represented.