Mbabazi files video evidence on rigging

Left to right: Electoral Commission’s lawyer Macdusman Kabega, Prof Oloka Onyango from Makerere School of Law, Deputy Attorney General Mwesigwa Rukutana and Mr Museveni’s lawyer, Hussein Kashillingi, at the Supreme Court yesterday. PHOTO BY DOMINIC BUKENYA

Kampala- Former presidential candidate Amama Mbabazi has filed video recordings he says contain evidence of presiding officers being instructed by their superiors to pre-tick ballot papers in favour of President Museveni during the February 18 election.

The video recordings are part of the more than 60 additional affidavits of evidence Mbabazi filed in the Supreme Court to support his petition challenging Museveni’s election.
One of the affidavits was sworn by Mr Fred Amanyire, a resident of Ngogoli 1 village, Kyangwali Parish, Kyangwali Sub-county, Buhannuzi County, Hoima District.

In his affidavit, he states that he was appointed a presiding officer for Buhuka Primary School polling station in Kyangwali Sub-county.

He states that he received a telephone call from the Kyangwali Sub-county election supervisor, Mr Nelson Atumanya on February 15 inviting him for a meeting which would be presided over by a team from President Museveni’s office on the eve of elections [February 17].

He adds that indeed the meeting, involving him and other presiding officers, took place on the election eve.

He states that during the meeting, Mr Atumanya told the presiding officers that nobody from the President’s Office was going to meet them but the reason for the meeting was to inform them he had some instructions to communicate to them, which they were to observe the following day (on polling day).

Working on instructions
He says Mr Atumanya’s instructions included; to delay the election exercise to ensure that not more than half of the registered voters would be able to cast their votes in the prescribed time.

He further avers that in order to execute this move properly, they had to delay the voting process, verify the voters manually instead of scanning the voter’s verification slip with the bio-metric verification kit.

The other instructions to the presiding officers were; to close the voting exercise at exactly 4pm on the polling day and not to give or share any declaration forms with agents of the other candidates, and they were not allowed to seal any of the metallic polling boxes used in the polling exercise after the counting of the votes.

“Upon opening the polling metallic boxes, I was instructed by the said Nelson Atumanya (sub-county supervisor) to tick the ballot papers in favour of presidential candidate Yoweri Kaguta Museveni” reads part of Mr Amanyire’s affidavit filed in the Supreme Court.

“Due to the presence of the police and military forces in the area, I consequently ticked four booklets each comprised of 50 ballot papers in favour of candidate Yoweri Museveni.

I was able to make a video recording of the pre-ticking of the votes in favour of the presidential candidate Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. A copy of the video recording is here attached and marked C,” Mr Amanyire states in his affidavit in court.

He further contends that after the pre-ticking of the ballots in favour of Mr Museveni, he and other presiding officers were detained in the Kyangwali Sub-county office under the strict supervision of the same Atumanya.

To his affidavit, Mr Amanyire also attaches his appointment letter as the presiding officer of Buhuka Primary School polling station.

The evidence is part of the 65 additional affidavits that Mbabazi filed in the Supreme Court yesterday to bolster his evidence for the petition.

Mbabazi also presented video evidence showing Lt Gen Henry Tumukunde who flew a helicopter branded with candidate Museveni’s posters and stickers to Boma Grounds in Fort Portal and yet candidate Mbabazi was officially scheduled to hold his campaign rally at the same venue.

The landing of Gen Tumukunde’s chopper disrupted Mbabazi’s rally, the affidavits contend.
This video evidence is given by Mr Allan Kajoro, a mobiliser for Mr Mbabazi and a sector coordinator for Kaborole District.

“As the petitioner (Mr Mbabazi) arrived in Fort Portal later in the day on November 17, 2015, at Mpanga Market, his procession which I was part of, was attacked by a group of people identified by locals as crime preventers wearing NRM T-shirts and carrying first respondent’s (President Museveni) posters.” Mr Kajoro states in his affidavit before court
“A fight ensued between members of our procession and the invading NRM team wearing first respondent’s T-shirts until police intervened,” he adds.

The third video evidence is by Zephania Batemyeta, a resident of Makerere II Zone C, in Kawempe Division, Kampala District and also a mobiliser of Mr Mbabazi.

Core to Batemyeta’s video evidence is that he saw NRM supporters wearing party T-shirts defacing and destroying the campaign posters of Mr Mbabazi in all the various places that Mbabazi campaigned.

He adds that the defacing involved Mr Museveni’s supporters replacing and covering posters of Mr Mbabazi with their candidate’s posters.
A panel of nine judges of the Supreme Court led by Chief Justice Bart Katureebe will start hearing Mbabazi’s election petition tomorrow.