Akena unopposed: UPC urges his challengers to continue working for party

J. Akena. Courtesy/File photo.


Kampala—8, July 2020: The Lira Municipality MP also the Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) party president, Jimmy J.M Akena Obote can now have big-comfortable moments both during day and night after coming out unopposed.

Akena, who was fighting hard to keep his UPC party presidency, sees no challenger. This is not because no one had shown interest to unseat him, but because his cabinet imposed hefty amount for nomination fee. Each aspirant was to pay shs20m as a nomination fee, and only him pulled the cash.

Both of his challengers, among them Tom Omino, Denis Enap Adim had complained about the shs20m. To them, this was an enormous increase from shs3m paid during the last party internal elections.

On Wednesday, 8 July 2020, Akena was announced unopposed by the UPC electoral commission chairman during a press conference held in Kampala.

“On Wednesday 24, June 2020, the Secretary General released the Party Electoral Roadmap for entire internal processes ahead of 2021 general elections that include: Party Presidential election, Parliamentary, LC V Chairpersons and District Councillors, Mayors, LC III Chairpersons and other lower elective positions for primaries which started by general picking of nomination forms effective on 29th June 2020,” Hajji Kazimbiraine Mahmoud, Chairman, UPC party Electoral Commission says in his press release on Wednesday.

He added: “Picking and returning of Party Presidential nomination forms started on Monday 29th June and ended on Friday 3rd July 2020. Only Four (4) Party members showed interest and picked nomination forms as follows:

1.            Ms. Beatrice Amaro

2.            Mr. Omino Tom

3.            Mr. Denis Enap Adim

4.            Hon. Jimmy Akena

Out of the above mentioned four applicants, he added, “it is only one applicant, Hon. Jimmy Akena who returned the nomination form by close of business of the first exercise on 3rd July 2020, and he is now a sole candidate for the position of the Party President.”

“I want to thank all those members who picked nomination forms for their interest in the party and offering themselves to lead it. I want to appeal to them to continue working for the good of the party and work as a team.”

According to Mahmoud, Jimmy Akena is therefore hereby “forwarded to the District Conferences exercise for nomination starting from 16th  – 26th July 2020 that will be concluded by the National Delegates Conference for confirmation as Party President for the second term of office on 1st August 2020.”

He told the press that picking of forms and nomination of candidates for the rest of the elective positions is still ongoing, as per the Party Electoral Roadmap. “I want to thank all party leaders and members for their cooperation and coordination that is witnessing the smooth running of this ongoing exercise, and I call upon them to continue with that spirit to its logical conclusion.”

Tom Omino, one of the aspirants, told this publication recently that “Akena may have won the first battle in a series of battle yet to come, the war to liberate our party from the hands of Pro-NRM leaders has just begun.”

He added: “Withstanding the fact that the legal approach in the last five years has given little or no redress, to my surprise together with the UPC members at large, the leadership of Akena issued an electoral road map putting the nomination fees for the office of party president at Uganda shs20m.

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