A faction of Ugandans in North America under their umbrella body, UNAA has scrapped their self proclaimed President, Daniel Kawuma off the list of contestants in the up coming Presidential elections in Chicago, USA.
Kawuma who had previously battled for and lost the Presidency to a one Monday Atigo had expressed interest in the office ahead of the August elections. However, the association shut the door in his face, citing lack of necessary qualifications as per the association’s constitution.
The UNAA Constitution 6.11 states that: To be eligible for election to the Executive Committee, a person shall be a member of UNAA in good standing; shall be a resident of North America; shall fulfill all requirements that shall be determined by the Electoral Commission; and shall not have engaged in activities at any time that have undermined or had the potential to undermine the interests of the Association.
“Kawuma swore himself in illegally, he then dragged the Association to court bringing turmoil and unnecessary drama to UNAA. At the same time, his team seized the UNAA authority tools hence undermined the Association’s interests. This automatically disqualifies him,” a member of UNAA BOT told Nile Post.
In a statement issued June 4, UNAA EC secretary Herbert Twase said that out of the 48 nominee applications, Kawuma did not appear on the member’s list.
‘Electoral Commission received 48 nominee applications. 47 were validated and cleared only one candidate did not appear on the member’s list hence could not be cleared by the EC.’
This means that the race remains with four candidates namely; Frank Musisi, Henrietta Wamala, John Julius Muwulya and Patrick Ogwang.
Kawuma on recieving that news of his elimination stated that the reason for his exclusion was a ‘vague’ one since he had been paying membership dues for 10 years straight since joining UNAA in 2009.
“It’s been over two weeks since I contacted and petitioned the UNAA Electoral Commission leaders Ivan Mwanja and Herbert Twase to withdraw the false statements they presented to justify my exclusion from the ballot. They have neither responded nor acknowledged receiving my petition.”
“I was faced with a choice to either seek legal recourse and challenge this blatant abuse of power meant to sabotage and frustrate our team or find a solution to get our vision on the ballot in Chicago with less than 90 days to the election After deep consulting with my team, we chose to move forward by forming a coalition with a candidate whose values and agenda closely align with the vision of Team Kawuma,” he added.
Where Kawuma’s troubles started
Kawuma was part of the presidential elections that were won by UNAA incumbent Monday Atigo in Miami in 2017, however, Kawuma appealed to the Board of Trustees (BOT) who quashed Atigo’s presidency ordering for a re-run.
A stand off ensued between the BOT on one side with Kawuma, UNAA Electoral Commission (UNAA EC) and the UNAA Council with Atigo on the other. In the end a controversial reelection was held online in February last year which Atigo and camp shunned, leaving Kawuma the indefatigable president yet invalid.
Kawuma and camp seized the Association website, twitter handle and locked out Atigo and his team. A swearing-in ceremony was hence prepared forKawuma and he swore himself inas newly elected UNAA president, while the website splashed his profile and deleted that of Atigo
In response, Atigo’s team registered a new domain name, wrestled the twitter handle back from Kawuma and team, locked him out and he chaired their annual convention in Seattle later that year.
Kawuma out of options dashed to the superior court of Massachusetts, USA to seek a preliminary injunction on Atigo and his UNAA led executive.
Kawuma contended that he is the legally elected President of UNAA following victory in February online polls and therefore requested court to set aside Atigo and group as well as compel them to hand over instruments of power including; bank accounts and communication platforms.
However, court presided over by Hon Judge Edward P. Leibensperger ruled that Kawuma had no mandate to sue Atigo as he is constitutionally elected in a preliminary ruling last year, this outstanding court case is coming back to haunt Dr. Kawuma .