The Electoral Commission has announced January 14, 2021 as the date for presidential elections. The EC chairperson, Justice Simon Byabakama on Wednesday said presidential candidates will start campaigns on November 9, 2020 and end on January 12, 2021 before polls take place on January,14.
Just like it has been during the past elections, next year’s presidential election will fall on the same date as the parliamentary elections.
Commenting about the fracas that characterized the last day of nominations, Byabakama said he has not yet been briefed about what really transpired.
“We are going to sit with security. We want to find out what exactly happened and inquire into it. If we don’t inquire into these things, we might get something worse. What kind of country are we working towards? We must have peace to have a free, fair and credible election,”Byabakama said.
“I have not got a report from him(Kyagulanyi) about their role in the fracas. I first want to listen to both sides including the security details to get medicine to prevent further occurrence of such acts. If we find out security was in the wrong, we will ask the law to take its course. We don’t know the exact cause,” he said.
On the reports that National Unity Platform’s principal, Robert Kyagulanyi rejected the security detail given to him over the Tuesday fracas, the EC chairperson said he has not been formally informed of the same adding that the role of the security detail, Byabakama said the officers are supposed to move with the presidential candidate where he moves.
The EC chairperson however warned the presidential candidates and their supporters on violating Covid-19 guidelines put in place by government.
“I want to warn some of the presidential candidates that Covid-19 is in our amidst. Don’t mislead Ugandans and try to reduce Covid-19 to a non-existent threat. As candidates come to you seeking your support, be mindful of the virus and that you can only be useful to your candidate if you are healthy and normal,”Byabakama said.
By the closure of the nominations, 11 candidates had been cleared to vie for the highest office in the country in the forthcoming 2021 general elections.
According to data from the Electoral Commission, a total of 17.7 million voters will participate in the forthcoming general election up from 15.2 million voters in the 2016 polls.
The number of polling stations has also increased 28,010 in 2016 to 34,344 partly because of the increase in the number of administrative units including villages and districts.
Whereas districts have increased from 112 to 135, the number of villages has also gone up from 57,842 to 68,733 between 2016 and now.
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The 11 presidential candidates include Yoweri Museveni(NRM), Henry Tumukunde(Independent),Mugisha Muntu(Alliance for National Transformation),Robert Kyagulanyi (National Unity Platform),Patrick Amuriat (FDC),Mayambala Willy(Independent),John Katumba (Independent),Norbert Mao(Democratic Party),Nancy Kalembe(Independent), Fred Mwesigye(Independent) and Joseph Kabuleta(Independent).