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Besigye: I Will Not Endorse Party Candidates

Dr. Kiiza Besigye says he will not endorse any candidate standing to replace him as Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party president. He says all the three candidates standing for the position are competent enough to discharge the duties of party President.

Audio 4

Dr. Kiiza Besigye says he will not endorse any candidate standing to replace him as Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party president.

The retired Colonel, who has been at the helm of the biggest opposition party since 2005, said on Monday that all the three candidates standing for the position are competent to be able to discharge the duties of party President.

The decision to choose a new leader, Besigye says, will be left to the candidates and the 800 delegates to meet and convince each other on who is the best candidate to lead the party.

The contenders for the seat include Leader of Opposition in Parliament Nandala Mafabi, secretary for mobilization Mugisha Muntu and Geofrey Ekanya, the shadow Finance Minister.

Besigye says FDC has been built on very strong foundations of transparent democratic process and that is why he does not expect any problem in the transition process.

He says there are some people who have expressed worry citing divisions and conflict arising out of the process within the party but he does not envisage any at all.

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He says all candidates know the guidelines and rules of campaigns and whoever goes beyond them will be dealt with accordingly.

Besigye, who is chairing the fundraising committee of the party, says they are still facing problems with their budget for carrying out all the processes. This includes money to fund the National Council meeting and the delegates’ conference on November 22 which will cost them 728 million shillings.

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He calls on party members and well wishers to contribute money for the events so as to avoid the aspiring presidential candidates sponsoring travel of some voters to the delegates and national council meetings.

Dan Mugarura, the FDC party electoral commission chairman, says all candidates were given a chance to agree among themselves on where and when each of them will be. The final campaign programme will be out on Thursday this week.

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The FDC National Executive Committee that sat on Wednesday last week again raised the issue of Nandala stepping down as Leader of Opposition during the campaign period. This is a requirement in the party electoral guidelines.

Besigye says the controversy is on the definition of what a government office is.

Alice Alaso, the party secretary general, was asked to write to Rebecca Kadaga, the Speaker of Parliament on Nandala taking leave.

However, Nandala has argued that he holds a political office and he is not a civil servant.

 

Besigye says the management meeting that is set to sit on Tuesday will resolve the matter but the Leader of Opposition remains in his office.

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