Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga emphatically won competitor, Lands State Minister, Persis Namuganza, to remain the second national vice chairperson of the ruling National Resistance Movement
Kadaga garnered 6,776 votes against Namuganza’s 3,882 votes. Well as it was a Kadaga – Namuganza contest, insiders within the party say, it was a war Namuganza was engaged in, and it is the reason why senior government officials such as Foreign Affairs minister, Sam Kahamba Kutesa and Government Chief Whip, Ruth Nankabirwa were all lashing Kadaga
According to Maj. Gen. Matayo Kyaligonza, the Party chairperson, Yoweri Museveni had opted Kadaga out of the race. Kyaligonza told the media, Museveni asked Kadaga that since she is serving the country as Speaker, she should concentrate on that.
Kadaga rejected the proposal, asked the President to let NRM delegates determine her fate through an election.
Later, Government Chief Whip Ruth Nankabirwa recorded an audio message, accusing Kadaga of working with the opposition to undermine the ruling NRM.
“I have gone through a lot in Parliament; we want people who are committed to fighting for the party, not those that betray us, working with the opposition to undermine our party.” Nankabirwa said.
Similar deliberations had been made by Namuganza to the members of NRM’s National Executive Committee (NEC) who form the Electoral College that elects the CEC members.
Nankabirwa’s lash against Kadaga started on Saturday night when she posted in a WhatsApp group named “NRM Senior Cadres’ a message at 8:58 pm telling the NRM delegates to write a “statement in black and white by voting Princess Namuganza.”
This was followed by several other text messages in which she called Kadaga a chameleon. “She is a chameleon, fighting every soul,” Nankabirwa cried out.
Ahead of the polling day, Kadaga deployed MPs to their respective districts to marshal support in her favor. The NEC members voted from 142 polling stations spread around the country. At each of those polling stations, Kadaga had at least an MP to deliver a final message to the voters.
Namuganza cried foul, accusing the MPs of bribing voters. In districts such as Kalangala NRM leaders at the Party district offices engaged in the delivery of the monetary and good will messages to the voters.
In Sembabule, the Woman MP Anifa Kawooya attacked Minister Kutesa for supporting Namuganza. Kutesa convinced only 13 members out of the 67 people forming his district’s Electoral College to vote for Namuganza.
Also, Kadaga’s nemesis, the Deputy Speaker Jacob Oalanyah has also won a seat previously held by Col. Sam Engola. Oulanyah scored 7,473 votes against Engola’s 1,665 votes to become the NRM vice chairman northern region.
For the Western region, Dr Chris Baryomunsi, the State Minister for Housing will be the vice-chairman after defeating the incumbent Maj. Gen. Matayo Kyaligonza with 5,947 votes against 2,550.
Katongole Singh Marwaha defeated the incumbent Amooti Godfrey Nyakana after scoring 4,503 votes against 2,665 votes to win the Kampala VC slot.
For the vice-chairman Buganda region, Godfrey Kiwanda Ssuubi, the State Minister for Tourism, took the day after defeating his closest challenge Moses Karangwa Kalisa. Kiwanda got 4,749 votes against Karangwa’s 3,701.
Additional reporting by URN