Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu aka Bobi Wine has warned the Electoral Commission and President Yoweri Museveni to abandon plans of organising ‘scientific’ elections under the guise of protecting masses from coronavirus disease.
The EC, last week, announced a deviation from the norm, banning mass campaign rallies for next year’s general election. Instead, the electoral body insisted that those vying for the various political seats, reach out to their electorate through digital and electronic media including radios, TVs, print and social media.
EC cited the dangers posed by mass gatherings in the spread of coronavirus that has ravaged the entire world since December 2019. The highly infectious disease spreads from person-to-person through touching contaminated surfaces and then touching an unprotected face as well as inhaling air droplets of an infected person.
As such, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommended that countries ban mass gatherings and public transport, maintain social distancing among other preventive measures to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Nearly the entire world went into lockdown between February and May this year – with countries only starting to ease some movement and gathering restrictions recently.
But Kyagulanyi said the coronavirus disease is no excuse enough for Uganda to hold ‘scientific elections’ because countries with worse COVID-19 statistics have successfully held normal conventional election processes. Uganda currently has 774 confirmed coronavirus cases with over 631 recoveries and no deaths as yet. He wondered how the people of Malawi, Burundi and United States of America that are also affected by the pandemic were able to have normal election processes including holding mass rallies.
Kyagulanyi told journalists in Kampala that as People Power movement, they were taken aback by the proposal to outlaw open-air campaigns, saying this is unacceptable to him and the group he leads.
Kyagulanyi by doing this, Museveni risks being shoved out of power through mass uprisings.
either organize a free and fair election or step down peacefully but if you
continue provoking Ugandans, Ugandans will rise up against you and you will end
up in the dustbin of history,” Kyagulanyi said.
He described the ‘scientific election’ as
another ploy by Museveni to extend beyond 35 years his tenure as the president
of Uganda. He said after the attack on parliament in 2017 in a bid to push
through the bill scrapping presidential term limits, he thought he had seen the
worst Museveni can go to just to keep himself in power.
“As we speak now, most urban places are filled with people; no social distancing, no nothing and if you want to prove the words I’m saying