FDC Party Primaries Results in Gulu Challenged

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They are two different parties, with a different leadership styles and separate ideologies, but they share something in common- a fraught primary election.

The mess that characterized the NRM party primaries seems to be slowly penetrating the FDC party.

Several people are already protesting against the results of the just concluded FDC party primaries in Gulu.

Petitions started trickling in shortly after Denis Okot; the Gulu district FDC electoral commissioner announced the results this morning.

Christine Atim Okema, who was vying for the position of LC3 councilor for Queens Ward, has accused her political rival, Margaret Anyango, of bribing her way to victory. She is calling on the FDC party's electoral commission to annul the results and conduct fresh polls.

Omara Patrick Bayi Ongom, a candidate for LC3 chairperson for Bungatira Sub County is also petitioning. He said the polls were not free and fair and accused his opponent and incumbent, Simon Ojok, of bribing voters and using negative propaganda against other candidates. Ongom is calling for fresh elections.

Accompanied by a crowd of voters, Ongom said they are willing to testify against Ojok over his alleged bribery. He also challenged that the Electoral College comprising few party executives, were manipulated while in some instances, the distance to the polling station prevented others from voting.

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Denis Okot, the party's district electoral commissioner, says he has so far received three petitions calling for fresh elections. He however maintained that largely, the polls were calm and conducted in a free and fair manner. He said the commission would consider all formal petitions.

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According to the results, Reagan Okumu, the MP for Aswa county together with Betty Aol Ochan, the Gulu district woman MP were elected unopposed to contest for another term of office.

Christopher Acire, the Gulu municipality mayor defeated incumbent, David Penytho for the Gulu municipality MP candidate.

Elsewhere, Martin Ojara, the Gulu district speaker, beat Makmot Kitara, the district LC5 vice chairperson in a bid to challenge him for the district LC5 seat.

Kitara has conceded defeat, but said it was not possible that he could only get 26 votes compared to Ojara's 148 votes. He said he was shocked to learn that in most sub counties he either got zero or only two votes.

The FDC party primary elections conducted through the Electoral College comes shortly after the ruling NRM party held a similar exercise but using adult suffrage.