As I was trying to get a taxi, a man came behind me and as I was still negotiating fares to my destination, the taxi conductor turned to his other client. The client spoke Luganda and English. Then tribal undertone ensued and the little that eavesdropped from the talk was what went like: “You are in the sytem."
Enter Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata. While at the send-off of Musalia Mudavadi’s mother, he renewed the call for rotational president among the various tribes in Kenya. Kenyata said his successor should come from the other tribes that have never produced a president. Since 1963, the top most seat has been revolving around two tribes - the Kikuyu and the Kalenjin. Ethnicity is considered vital in the sharing of national resources. The elite tend to disproportionately accord national resources basing on region and tribe where they come from.
Unfortunately, Uganda finds itself in similar predicament like Kenya. We may wish to bury the matter of tribalism, but truth be told, talk of regional imbalance in distribution of national cake has been growing, and it is not about to end any time soon. We often read or listen to comments, especially by senior citizens, how every president in Uganda has ensured that people from his region as well as religion are favoured in many ways. Therefore, implementing President Kenyatta’s proposal would be a step in right direction.
The matter of equitable distribution of the nation cake should not be wished away by any president. Worse still, our leaders should stop giving lip-service to fight tribalism, rather, they should be seen walking the talk.
It’s wrong for EC to exclude poll votes
As we are trying to get wind of the electoral period, the confirmation by the Electoral Commission (EC) that it excluded results from more than 1,200 polling stations dampens the mood for electoral democracy. This is not the first time results are being excluded from the final tallying of results. It also happened in 2016 when results from some polling stations, including Kampala, were ignored. Such a precedent is not acceptable. So, voters cast their votes only for the EC to tell them that even if they include their votes, they cannot make any significant difference.
In an election, every vote counts. It is unfortunate that such reasoning is being perpetrated by the EC. Hopefully, this will be put to rest legally. You cannot spend time and resources calling on Ugandans to vote and then exclude their votes in the final tallys. It is disturbing that the polling stations excluded include those of Kampala and Wakiso district, which are even closer to the EC national tallying centre.
I think the EC owes voters and the country an explanation why they did not include their votes in final tally regardless of their impact on the final outcome.