The opposition Forum for Democratic Change-FDC party wants Electoral Commission to extend the deadline for registering voters for the lower local council polls. In August, Electoral Commission released a roadmap for the compilation of the register for voters for the village, parish, Sub county, town council, municipal, Division and district levels.
According to the roadmap, the registration of voters started on October 26th and ends today October, 30th, 2017. The elections are scheduled to take place on November 14th, 2017 in over 5000 villages countrywide. Paul Mwiru, the Deputy FDC Party spokesperson, says they have observed that only a few people have registered for the polls.
He wants the Commission to extend the registration deadline to allow more people to register. For Mzee Joseph Mugisha, a voter at Mawanda Road Primary school, he says he missed the registration since he had traveled to northern Uganda.
According to Mugisha, on his return, he had that people were registering but didn’t know where to register from. Habiragi Nzigi, a voter in Busabala Road Cell, says he didn’t register because he wasn’t aware of the exercise. According to Nzigi, their LC I chairperson didn’t inform them since he always updates them on government programs in the area.
Robert Sebashenyi, another voter says he didn’t register since he is weary of lining up behind the candidate of his choice.
He also appealed to the Electoral Commission to extend the registration deadline to allow who haven’t registered to do so.
However, Sylvia Birungi, a registered voter in Kifumbira Cell Mulago 3, says there is no need for EC to extend the registration deadline, saying Ugandans can’t respond unless government enforces a strict deadline.
Uganda last had Local Council elections in 2001 under the movement system but because of the Amendment of the Local Government (Amendment) Bill 2014 which cut down on the funds for elections by allowing the system of lining up, the country has not had elections since then.