Electoral Commission (EC) has announced that the Commission has resumed preparation to conduct the long awaited Local Council (LC) elections.
EC chairperson Justice Simon Mugenyi Byabakama on Wednesday announced that the Commission is working out a detailed fresh program on how to conduct the LC1, LC2 and Women Councils and Committees elections. This comes a few hours after High Court permitted the Commission to conduct the elections.
However, while a press briefing at the EC Headquarters on Wednesday, EC boss Byabakama said that the Commission will need more funds to conduct the elections that were halted last year.
“We had a tentative budget, but that was before this court ruling. Since court has asked the Commission to first fulfill some of these conditions to guide the elections smoothly, we shall need more money to that effect, but we shall let you (media) know how much we shall need in the due course,” Byabakama said.
Last year, Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development released Shs15.7bn to conduct the LC elections.
It should be remembered that EC had set November 14, 2017 for the election of women village committees and November 21, 2017 for the election of Local Council I Committees. However, a day to the elections, High Court in Kampala issued a temporary injunction on the polls after a one James Tweheyo challenged the conducting of the polls between November and December 8 on grounds that senior six candidates who are eligible to vote would be siting their exams and thus would be disenfranchised.
On November 15, 2017, Court advised EC and the petitioners to explore an out of Court settlement and report back to Court on the 31st January 2018.
Byabakama told members of the press that whereas court has finally given them a green light to conduct elections, the Commission will first need to fulfil conditions from court before releasing a fresh program for the elections.
“The Commission would like to thank all stakeholders particularly, all those who had expressed willingness to contest, the voters and the citizens at large for their patience, and assure them that the long awaited elections will take place,” Byabakama said.