New NRM Elections for Masindi Hang in the Balance

Information and National Guidance Minister, Kabakumba Matsiko, has apologized profusely for the botched National Resistance Movement elections held on Monday.

The NRM primary elections in Masindi, like in much of Uganda, were called off due to voting irregularities. Names were missing from registers, an insufficient number of ballot papers were distributed and election materials arrived at polling stations quite late in the day.

A meeting was convened at Masindi Town Council hall late on Monday to discuss the problems.

Matsiko, who is the NRM Masindi chairperson, admitted that there were numerous shortcomings in the electoral process. She said she had learned that voting materials meant for Kiboga district were delivered to Masindi and those intended for Masindi polling stations were mixed up.

Masiko however said the mishaps should not affect the strength of the NRM around the country.

Joshua Amanyire, the acting Mayor of Masindi, told NRM voters at the meeting that he cannot afford the postponement of the elections. He said he was almost broke after spending millions on his campaigns and another day on the electoral circuit will run him to the ground.

Kabakumba Matsiko called for patience. She said the NRM is only five years old as an independent political party and is working out systems for better management.

By 7 p.m. on Monday evening, the Minister was still consulting with 1,000 people at the Masindi Town Council hall meeting. No resolution had been reached on the new date for the elections, but it is expected that the postponement will not go beyond five days.