The ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party is confident that it will win the next general election with a landslide, owing to the number of voters on its register.Speaking at the party headquarters at Plot 10 Kyadondo Road in Kampala, Sam Engola, the party’s vice-chairperson for northern Uganda said with 11.9 million registered voters (more than two-quarters of all 17 million registered voters) in the country, it is a foregone conclusion that they will pick up every elective position in the coming 2021 election.
“We want our chairman and the party candidates to win with the highest marks and the cleanest election like we never had before. Those people who have registered are already our voters before the elections,” Engola said, as the NRM secretariat handed over the party register to the NRM Electoral Commission.
President Yoweri Museveni’s aides and lawyer picked his nomination forms for the party chairman position and party flag bearer position. According to NRM Electoral Commission chairperson Tanga Odoi. Museveni reportedly paid Shs40 million for the nomination of the two positions.
Engola added that with such a big number of voters, there is no reason why an NRM member would be engaged in acts of cheating elections.
“We don’t want any forgery, we don’t want any mistake in this election, we want those who are winning to win with a clear intension that nothing is behind them.”NRM deputy secretary general Richard Todwong said the party’s registered membership is over 25 million people of which 11.9 are eligible to vote. In compiling the party register, the NRM registers people from the age of 16. However, it’s only those who are 18 years and above and have registered with the Electoral Commission who are allowed to vote in the party primaries.
“Even if we don’t look for new members our members are enough for us to win elections,” Todwong said.
However, there has been a concern from some section of the public who doubt the authenticity of the NRM register. Critics wonder how a country with 40 million people, a big percentage of whom are below the age of 15 can have 25 million voters subscribing to the NRM. It’s equally surprising that the Electoral Commission has 17 million registered voters of which NRM claims to own 11.9 million.
“Registration is a continuous exercise for a political party, if you intend to be a member, our secretary-general will register you,” Todwong said in defence of those who doubt the authenticity of the register.Meanwhile, the party’s vice chairman for Central region, Haji Abdul Nadduli has cautioned Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi who has indicated that he would be challenging President Yoweri Museveni in the coming elections to tread carefully. Nadduli said if Kyagulanyi and his supporters don’t tone down their political rhetoric, his political journey might come to a sudden tumbling end.
“I call upon you my son, you have just started your political journey, don’t allow your supporters to spoil it for you. If they want to show you that they love you then they shouldn’t follow you everywhere. Be in this politics politely so that you can survive. When you become undisciplined you will fall into an ambush,” Nadduli said.
Nadduli defended the scientific campaigns saying there is no difference with the previous elections. He said all a candidate needs to do, is moving village per village explaining to the people individually what he intends to do for them.
“In the five years we spent fighting, we never asked Obote to give us an opportunity to speak to the people to give them our program,” Nadduli said.