Nantaba ‘quits’ MP race on polling day

Friday January 15 2021
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Ms Idah Nantaba

By Fred Muzaale

The incumbent Woman MP for Kayunga District, Ms Idah Nantaba, yesterday threatened to quit the race following a fracas on Wednesday night with security personnel.
The police intercepted 15 mini buses (Coasters) ferrying what Ms Nantaba described as her polling agents from Kampala because she “doesn’t trust those in Kayunga.”

“I have quit the race and I have petitioned the EC to halt District Woman MP elections in Kayunga until this issues are sorted out,” Ms Nantaba, the former state minister for ICT, said during a press conference at her home in Kayunga  District. 
She had disappeared from the district three weeks ago, raising suspicion among her competitors on what move she was planning, only to appear with a fleet of vehicles in the district.

Mr Joshua Kananura, the district police commander, said they were tipped off that Ms Nantaba was ferrying supporters from Kampala to Kayunga.
He said they mounted road blocks on all roads to Kayunga and at 11.30pm,  the minibuses carrying about 40 people each were intercepted at Ntooke Village on Kayunga-Mukono highway.

Mr Kananura said they followed their movement from Ndese Trading Centre in Mukono about 15 miles from Kayunga Town.
Ms Nantaba, who is contesting as an independent candidate, laboured in vain to have the vehicles left to proceed but Mr Kananura claimed the strangers were being ferried to the district to destabilise the elections.
“We received intelligence information that Ms Nantaba was carrying voters in the wee hours and we had to stop them. It was curfew time,”  he said.

After failing to secure the release of the agents, Ms Nantaba accused security agencies of being biased and trying to rig the election in favour of her opponents.
At about 8am, Mr Kananura allowed the vehicles to be driven to Ms Nantaba’s home. She asked the agents to drive back to Kampala.
Mr Rashid Musinguzi, the district returning officer, said Ms Nantaba had talked about her quitting but said she should have made it formal in writing.