Uganda Today: UNAA Electoral Commission Saga Sparks Outrage and Calls for BOT Resignation Are Unstoppable.
Kampala biased and charade organisation of elections which is characterized by court petitions right from that of the president to all lower levels, seem to have permeated to UNAA as well.
With Kampala administration penetration of UNAA with funding, government set a foothold onto UNAA to the extent that, it’s now apparent that the ruling National Resistance Movement Party is using its influence to interfere with UNAA Electoral Commission institution and composition in order to pave a smooth way for its candidates to sail through easily or unopposed in the same way it’s done in Kampala.
In a shocking turn of events, the recent dismissal of opposition-leaning members from the Uganda North Association of America (UNAA) Electoral Commission has revealed a blatant violation of the organization’s constitution.
Members who were known to hold divergent political opinions were mysteriously left out, leading to an outcry among UNAA members.
The UNAA constitution, specifically Article 9.2, clearly stipulates the independence of the electoral commission, granting the Board of Trustees (BOT) no powers to terminate the commissioners. Furthermore, the appointment of the vice chairperson and secretary of the commission is designated to be conducted by the commissioners themselves, with the BOT limited to appointing only the chairman, as outlined in Article 9.4.
However, in a display of disregard for the constitution they are entrusted to uphold, BOT Chairman Mr. Ronald Kabaale’s team in the BOT dismissed Kriss Namakola, a member affiliated with the NUP/People Power party. Kriss had been serving as the vice chairman of the commission. Christine Nalubega, a commissioner known for her outspoken criticism of the system, was also unjustly fired. Additionally, Barbra Munube, a Chicago-based lawyer, found herself among those terminated.
These actions by Mr. Kabaale violate the principles of an independent electoral commission that the UNAA constitution seeks to safeguard. As a result, UNAA members are now demanding the immediate resignation of both Mr. Kabaale and the chairperson of the Electoral Commission, Florence Bazanye.
The appointment of Aisha Kasule, the wife of Timothy Nyonjo, as the secretary of the electoral commission has raised concerns about a potential conflict of interest. Timothy Nyonjo is the campaign manager for Lambert Etibort, who is concurrently running for the presidency of UNAA while still serving as the organization’s secretary-general. This perceived conflict of interest casts doubts on the impartiality and fairness of the electoral process.
UNAA members have expressed their outrage over these unconstitutional firings and the questionable appointments, demanding that the organization’s leadership act swiftly and transparently to rectify the situation. The dismissal of opposition-leaning members and the appointment of individuals with potential conflicts of interest undermine the credibility of UNAA’s electoral process and threaten the democratic principles the organization upholds.
As the controversy intensifies, all eyes are now on the UNAA leadership to uphold the constitution and restore faith in the electoral commission. The immediate resignation of Mr. Ronald Kabaale and the chairperson of the Electoral Commission, as demanded by UNAA members, may serve as a crucial step toward rebuilding trust and ensuring a fair and transparent election process for the association’s future.