Kabasharira supporters protest Rushenyi NRM vote recount 

Thursday September 17 2020

Youth block Ntungamo-Kabale road yesterday while protesting the recount of the Rushenyi County NRM vote. PHOTO | PEREZ RUMANZI

By Perez Rumanzi

Voters in Rushenyi County in Ntungamo District yesterday protested the decision by the NRM electoral commission chairperson, Mr Tanga Odoi, to cancel the victory of Ms Naome Kabasharira as the party flag bearer.

About 500 protesters converged in Rwentobo Town Council about 40km from Ntungamo Town, carrying placards, accusing the party of dishonesty. 

The protesters blocked Ntungamo-Kabale road with stones and burnt tyres, disrupting traffic.

Police shot live bullets in the air to disperse the protesters after about 45 minutes of closing the highway leading to Kabale, Kisoro and to the border with Rwanda and DR Congo.

The initial tallies of the NRM primaries  in Rushenyi on September 4 stated that Ms Kabasharira appeared to have defeated the State minister of Labour, Mr Mwesigwa Rukutana.
Mr Rukutana was later arrested and charged with attempted murder and threatening violence. He was released on bail on Tuesday.

The ensuing chaos prompted the intervention of President Museveni and the NRM electoral commission headquarters in Kampala which culminated in the recount of votes.


On Tuesday, Dr Tanga started the recounting of votes in Rushenyi, announcing at the end of first day of the exercise that Mr Rukutana was leading Ms Kabasharira by four votes. 
He, however, said he would give the final verdict today.

Ms Maria Mirembe Baitwa,  the Ntungamo NRM election officer on September 6 announced Ms Kabasharira the winner of the party flag with 24,006 votes ahead of Mr Rukutana with 23,966 votes. 

Mr Rukutana’s agents later petitioned Mr Tanga for a recount.
Other candidates in the race were Mr Bob Karabayi (2,266 votes), Mr Nicholas Niwahereza (1,202) and Mr Norman Kashereka (346).