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Late Arrival of Voting Materials Delays Start of Rubanda Elections

Delay in dispatch of materials and poor voter turn-up have delayed the start of voting in Rubanda district. The newly created district is among the four holding by-elections to fill up vacant positions that became available effective July 1, 2016.
polling officials at Bubaare Sub County headquarter polling station waiting for voters
Delay in dispatch of materials and poor voter turn-up have delayed the start of voting in Rubanda district.

The newly created district is among the four holding by-elections to fill up vacant positions that became available effective July 1, 2016. The four districts including Rubanda, Kagadi, Kakumiro and Omoro are holding elections for Woman Member of Parliament and district local council five chairpersons.

In Rubanda, the ruling NRM party candidate Jogo Kenneth Biryabarema is facing Independents Stephen Ampeire Kasaba, Nelson Habasa and opposition FDC candidate Joseph Ruhangariyo for Local Council 5 seat.

The woman Member of Parliament position attracted three candidates including Prosy Begumisa of NRM, FDC's Vastine Mutatina and Kabarungi Hilder Karuhize who is an Independent candidate.

The polling exercise was expected to start by 7am at various polling stations across Rubanda District.  However by 8am, most polling officials were still sorting out and transporting the voting materials. 

At Bubaare Sub County headquarters polling station, Ihanga Market polling station and Mukyahi Primary school polling station in Bubaare Sub County, voting started after 8:00am.

Moreen Namanya, the presiding officer at Bubaare Sub County headquarters polling station says that they were forced to extend the exercise up to 8:30am due to low turn up by voters.

Eunice Kenchindo, the Presiding officer at Ihanga Market Polling station, says voting started at 8:20am due to late arrival of voting materials. Kenchindo says they have delayed to start because a motorcycle which they were using to transport materials got a mechanical problem while on the way from the Sub county headquarters. 

Christine Ndyamusimanta, the presiding officer at Muchahi primary school says that voting started at 8:45am because voters arrived late. 

At Kateretere Polling station in Nangara parish Nyamweru Sub County, Josephine Asiimwe the presiding officer says that voting has started at 8:38am. Asiimwe says that materials arrived late due to the poor state of roads.

Asiimwe is concerned that the delayed distribution of the voting materials is likely to affect the polling exercise meant to stop at 4pm.

Bernad Asiimwe, a voter from Kateretere Polling station says that he was not disturbed by polling officials and security while voting.

Kenneth Kayogoza a voter from Hakichwamba polling station in Mugyera parish, Bufundi Sub County says that voting started at 9:30am due to late arrival of voting materials. Kayogoza says the turn-up is also very low.

Ismail Turkey Atwijukyire, the Rubanda District Returning Officer blames the sub county and parish polling officials for failing to do their work in time yet they were aware that materials were dispatched from the district last evening.

Meantime Anti-riot police is heavily deployed in the District to quell any violence. Police spokesperson for Kigezi Region, Elly Maate says that deployment is aimed at maintaining security.