Breaking

Activists Demand More Women on Electoral Commission

Previous chairpersons of the commission are K.M.S Kikira, who chaired the commission that organized the 1980 General Elections, Steven Bethuel Akabway-the chairperson of the Interim Electoral Commission, Hajji Aziz Kasujja- the chairperson of the first permanent electoral Commission and Dr Badru Kiggundu, the outgoing chairperson.
Speaker Kadaga chatting with UWONET members at Parliament

Audio 2

Women rights activists are demanding for the appointment of more women to the leadership of the Electoral Commission.

The activists want President Yoweri Museveni to appoint a woman at the helm of the Commission, noting that no woman has ever served as chairperson of the electoral body before and after the promulgation of the 1995 constitution.

Previous chairpersons of the commission are K.M.S Kikira, who chaired the commission that organized the 1980 General Elections, Steven Bethuel Akabway-the chairperson of the Interim Electoral Commission, Hajji Aziz Kasujja- the chairperson of the first permanent electoral Commission and Dr Badru Kiggundu, the outgoing chairperson.

Women have only served in the position of Deputy Chairperson with Flora Nkurukenda deputizing Akabway in the Interim Electoral Commission which organized the first ever‚Äźdirect Presidential and Parliamentary elections in 1996. She also deputized Hajji Aziz Kasujja. The other was Sr. Margaret Magoba.

Other females who have served on the commission as commissioners include Hajjati Syda Bumba, Margaret Sekajja, Mary I.D.E. Maitum and Nassanga Miiro.

Patricia Munaabi, the executive director of Forum for Women in Democracy (FOWODE) says that the numbers of women, who have served on the commission, do not reflect objective IV of the national objectives of the constitution which provides for gender balance and fair representation.

The plea is embedded in a petition presented to the Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga today. It was signed by eight organizations including UWONET, FOWODE, Women's Democracy Network, Akina mama wa Afrika, Action for Development, Isis-Wicce and Center for Women in Governance and FIDA Uganda.

Munaabi says that with the term of the current EC expiring next month, Parliament should consider gender parity on its checklist when vetting the new commissioners.

//Cue In: "We note with concern...

Cue Out:...with authority"//

UWONET Executive Director Rita Aciro says they have proposed a number of women to be considered for the positions. They include former Ethics Minister, Miria Matembe, former EALA MP Irene Ovonji-Odida, former MPs Tezira Jamwa and Beatrice Kiraso.

The others are Christine Lawoko, Solome Nakaweesi Kayondo, Dr Zahara Nampewo and Prof Josephine Ahikire, Dean School of women and gender studies at Makerere University.

Speaker Kadaga acknowledged their concerns, stating that with women emancipation, more women have been propelled to leadership positions. She promised to raise the concerns with the President.

//Cue In: "We just renewed one...

Cue Out: ...many different situations"//