The Citizen’s Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) last Friday launched the 2021 elections report in Kampala, which among others, pointed out that there incidents of voter bribery, intimidation, ballot stuffing and violence at polling stations.
Miria Matembe, CCEDU board chairperson, said the 2021 presidential, parliamentary and the election of the Speaker of the 11th Parliament was a shame to democracy and Ugandans at large. She said the executive arm of government took over the entire electoral process and dictated who should be voted for which position.
“The institution of the executive took over the one of the Legislature during election of 11th Parliament Speaker. The last elections were an example of the executive taking over affairs of elections in Uganda,” she said.
She pointed out examples of where names of candidates were mixed up on ballot papers and that political party agents were insufficiently deployed, plus insufficient civic education.
“The electoral process fell short of International Standards for democratic elections”, she added.
The coordinator of CCEDU, Charity Ahimbisibwe cited low voter turnout during the just concluded elections as evidence that many people did not have confidence in the entire electoral process.
“In addition, there was disparity between the numbers of males and females elected during the 2021 elections. Male candidates’ numbers were abnormally higher than their female counterparts for all elective positions,” she said.
She cited the violence meted out against journalists by security personnel, during the visit by National Unity Platform (NUP) president, Robert Kyagulanyi, to the UN Human Rights Offices, in Kampala as evidence of gross violation of human rights.
CCEDU members recommended for advance training of election officials by the Electoral Commission (EC), to avoid election irregularities in future.
They also called for security personnel to distance themselves from electoral processes and called upon the electorate to stop taking financial and other material handouts, in exchange for votes.