The National Resistance Movement party yesterday took full advantage of its numerical strength and swept six of Uganda’s nine slots in the East African Legislative Assembly (Eala).
Opposition parties were left grumbling over election rules as the ruling party basked in victory.
With 298 MPs (68.9%) in a Parliament sitting 431 MPs, the six NRM candidates who were first picked during acrimonious primaries on February 8, went into yesterday’s election sure of a plain sailing and the polls did not disappoint.
Former Internal Affairs Minister Rose Akol emerged the best performing candidate with 370 votes. She was followed by former Kakuuto County MP Mathias Kasamba who polled 359 votes and Mr Paulo Mwasa Musamali, a former a policy analyst in the Government Chief Whip’s Office, who polled 350 votes.
Former Lira RDC George Michael Odong polled 346 votes; former Animal Husbandry State Minister Mary Mugyenyi 341 while Mr Dennis Namara, the ex-chair of the NRM Youth League, clinched 329 votes to complete NRM’s six-candidate line-up.
The Democratic Party’s Fred Mukasa Mbidde retained his seat with 311 votes. Ms Susan Nakawuki (Independent) 298 votes and Chris Opoka (Uganda Peoples Congress) 274 votes also held onto their seats.
A total of 398 MPs cast their votes in yesterday’s polls in which eight votes were declared invalid.
For the second Eala term, the Forum for Democratic Change (the country’s largest opposition party) will not send a representative to the regional Parliament after two of its candidates lost.
Ms Florence Ibi Ekwau polled 179 votes while the FDC Secretary for Mobilisation managed 25 votes.
Leader of Opposition (LoP) Winifred Kizza still put on a brave face, pointing out that the party was grateful that it managed to garner 179 votes for Ms Ekwau despite their numerical inferiority.
Speaker Rebbecca Kadaga and her deputy Jacob Oulanyah did not vote as the rules prohibit them from casting ballots.