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Kabale NRM Office to Discipline Anti-Mwesigye MPs :: Uganda Radionetwork

Kabale NRM Office to Discipline Anti-Mwesigye MPs

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The Kabale National Resistance Movement office will discipline its members who are supporting an independent candidate for the district woman parliamentary seat.

Ronah Rita Ninsiima, who lost the NRM primaries to Agriculture Minister Hope Mwesigye, was on Thursday nominated to stand in the 2011 elections.

Amos Rwanshaija, the Kabale NRM administrator, says Ninsiima's actions and the support of her followers is contrary to the party policy. He says the guidelines from the NRM president Yoweri Museveni are against the nomination and election of the primary election losers.

Rwanshaija singles out several MPs who he says have gone against the party grain. They are Henry Banyenzaki of Rubanda West, Wilfred Niwagaba of Ndorwa East, David Bahati of Ndorwa West, Henry Musasizi of Rubanda East and Serapio Rukundo the State Minister for Tourism who also serves as the incumbent MP of Kabale Municipality.

Rwanshaija doesn't provide details of the punishment awaiting the MPs. He says a meeting will be convened next week to discuss the matter.

Ritah Ronah Ninsiima is new to politics, but not to the people of southwestern Uganda. For several years she worked as a journalist with Radio West in Mbarara and developed a reputation as a good public speaker and ardent supporter of NRM.

Ninsiima's rise in Kabale was not a matter of chance, however. Several MPs and senior local government officials, disgruntled by the leadership of Hope Mwesigye as NRM Kabale chairperson, for several years actively sought to find a replacement for her in the House. They accuse Mwesigye of dividing the party along religious lines and antagonizing too many people in Kabale for her own good.

Wilfred Niwagaba says that given the fact that Mwesigye chairs the party executive in Kabale, the office has no authority to mete out punishment to those whose actions it finds offensive. He says the threat of discipline is merely a scare tactic by Mwesigye and her supporters.

//Cue in: "Go to court ..."

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Henry Banyenzaki, another MP due for discipline, warns of dire repercussions if the NRM Kabale office acts against him.

Banyenzaki blames the confusion among NRM supporters in Kabale on Mwesigye. He says the Minister has failed to unite MPs from the Kigezi region and is often at odds with individual members.

The offending MPs on Thursday attended a campaign to launch Ninsiima's election bid. They resolved to support each other in order to strengthen their support ahead of the 2011 elections.

Ninsiima says she had no choice but to stand as an independent candidate. She says that although she supports the NRM, she could not be part of a campaign of which Hope Mwesigye is a part.

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Hope Mwesigye refuses to comment on this development.


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