Okoler Opio June 14, 2022

Democratic Party congratulates Women who have successfully registered to participate in the forthcoming women council elections, we continue to encourage those that haven’t yet registered and are above 18 years of age to register at places designated by the electoral commission for the same. The electoral commission extended the registration process until Friday the 17th day of June, 2022.

The Democratic Party is here to express concern about the exercise of electing women councils and committees now going on at village level country wide.

We have noted that the exercise has not been known by the women mostly at the grassroots. Local council leaders are also not aware of what is going on so the turn up has been very low. The purpose of putting elections supervisors at the Parishes has been meaningless.

They have not done any mobilization. Instead of just being stationed at Local council one offices we suggest that they cause mobilization meetings at Village level so that the message can reach the women.

Secondly the issue of use of Identity cards as a requirement for registration is also a big obstacle. Many of the women do not have Identity cards. The process of getting the identity cards has been very tedious, bureaucratic and monetised. So this will deny many a chance of engaging in this exercise.

Thirdly there issue of fresh registration we feel that this is also not necessary since there is a General Register the electoral commission should just segregate the data for women voters in an electoral area , display these registers and cater for any changes like death or migration of a voter to clean the register. This would have brought more numbers than calling for fresh registration every time.

The other issue is voting by lining up is very crude and outdated. It causes chaos and enemity at the election day. Some designated places are too small especially in urban centres. The crowds end up causing violence which could easily be avoided if we opted for a secret ballot. We pray that this lining up method Is scrapped.

Lastly, Democratic Party believes that there is lack of transparency in the way the election supervisors at the lower levels are selected. Some are handpicked by relatives, and NRM cadres. We feel that this should change for this to be a free and fair election, let there be transparency in the recruitment exercise.

Wrong Government Priorities

Today the minisrer of finance is to address the national budget, from what was captured in the report on the annual budget estimates the government continues to get it wrong on its the priorities, Agriculture which supports over 80% of our population was given only 2.64% of the total budget, Uganda is a party to the Maputo Declaration which enjoins countries to allocate at least 10% of their annual budgets to Agriculture.

Uganda has continued to disregard this Declaration made in 2003, it has continued to prioritize infrastructural development over Agriculture, this is inimical to the economy of our country as it creates a jungle of economic clusters amongst the population whereby the advantaged utilise the established infrastructure to survive and yet the disadvantaged who are by the way the majority continue to sink in abject poverty.

The majority of Ugandans cannot afford electricity, with electric poles planted in their land but cannot afford power, they sleep in grass thatched houses of less than a quarter a million and yet connecting power goes for over two million shillings (2,000,000/=), we have beautiful roads passing through villages that are stuck in abject poverty, the children don’t attend and or abscond school due to lack of requirements like books costing as less as shillings three thousand (3000/=), the medical care is worrisome, with buildings but no drugs, schools with demotivated teachers some of which are grass thatched structures.

Therefore, Democratic Party continues to urge government to revise its priorities while allocating funds, we should start making budgets that are not only focusing on borrowing and expending but it should fund strategies aimed at increasing the country’s tax base from one million tax payers so that we are able to finance at least 80% of our annual budget locally and a deliberate move to heavily invest in Agriculture can easily widen our tax base.

This budget requires URA to raise at least twenty five trillion shillings (25 trillion) in this financial year that amounts to about 53% of the budget, now the government needs to up the strategies and be able to finance at least 80% of our budget.

About twelve trillion will be picked from domestic sources and seven trillion will be picked from External Development Partners. We advise that borrowing from domestic sources should be avoided as much as possible as this increases the interest on borrowed money beyond comfortable reach of the business fretanity.


Okoler Opio Lo Amanu
0775107003 / 0700727704