The Independent Electoral Commission has declared JEEMA president and lawyer Asuman Basalirwa as the duly elected Member of Parliament for the newly created Bugiri Municipality constituency after trouncing FDC’s Eunice Namatende and NRM’s John Francis Oketcho.
Basalirwa polled 3,928 which was a difference of over 600 votes against the second and also ruling NRM party’s Oketcho whereas Namatende came third with only 928 votes.
Independent candidates Joel Wamono and Lyavala Siraji Samanya got 15 and 8 votes respectively in the race.
The outcome of the election was however a surprise to many with Oketcho coming second contrary to what had been predicted. During the campaigns, the tight contest seemed to between the two opposition candidates, Basalirwa and Namatende but the results indicated otherwise.
Basaalirwa’s win was a slap in the face for President Museveni and opposition strongman Dr.Kizza Besigye because both campaigned for their party’s candidates in the race.
Speaking to NBS television shortly before being declared winner, Basalirwa applauded voters for entrusting him with the powers to represent them in the August House.
“They realized my competence and voted for me,”Basalirwa said.
Earlier even before the vote count ended, FDC’s Namatende conceded defeat to JEEMA’s Basalirwa in a statement posted on her social media pages.
“Friends, it was a great opportunity to take part in the Bugiri MP Municipality elections! These were two long months of campaigns for me and my team! We would like to thank you all for your contribution as we believed that we could make a contribution in leading our people in Parliament. I would like to thank all those that supported us and voted for me! You are great men and women of Bugiri,” a statement from Namatende read in part.
“To my Party FDC, you stood by me and that is being principled and loyal! As a young woman that means so much to me and I hope that is something that many will appreciate in our Party for many years to come. To my opponents, we had a good campaign and this is the moment where I can stand up to say with my head high the people have decided and unfortunately it is not me. My brother Asuman Basalirwa Congratulations for your hard earned win as the MP Elect of Bugiri Municipality. Mr Basalirwa, I wish you well as our first MP of Bugiri Municipality. Lead us! Be an example out there to many MPs that Bugiri people we are different Godspeed!”