Omoro county by-election on today

Omoro – Voters in Omoro county go to the polls Thursday to elect the area member of parliament and district woman councillor representing Lalogi/Lakwaya.

Six candidates are vying for the position of MP, Omoro county, which fell vacant following the death of the former legislator, who also served at the national level as the speaker of parliament, the late Jacob L’Okori Oulanyah

The six are Ojok Adrew Oulanyah (National Resistance Movement), Toolit Simon Akecha (National Unity Platform), Odong Justine (Forum for Democratic Change), Kizza Oscar (Alliance for National Transformation), Odonga Terence, and Onen Jimmy Walter who are both independent candidates.

Those contesting for district woman councillor representing Lalogi/Lakwaya electoral area include Anek Christine Teopista of Uganda People’s Congress, Forum for Democratic Change’s Ayo Mercy, Laboi Margret a National Unity Platform candidate, Lalam Florence of National Resistance Movement and Lawino Franka an independent candidate.

The five are seeking to replace Caroline Nyakorach who resigned from the position.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the Electoral Commission (EC) Chairperson Justice Simon Byabakama notes that voting will kick off at 7:00am and close at 4:00pm in all 84 polling stations for Omoro MP and 25 polling stations for district woman councillor, Lalogi/Lakwaya.

“Thereafter, counting of votes and announcing of results by the respective presiding officer shall take place.” He says

Byabakama notes that a total of 38,638 voters are eligible to participate in Thursday’s polls for Omoro county constituency.

As per S.16 (1a) of the electoral commission act, the EC has permited political parties, civil society organisations and other duly registered institutions, to deploy observers for the electoral activities.

“These accredited observers will be required to limit their activity to the designated areas (sub county), and Police has been notified to enforce this regulation.” Notes Byabakama adding that media personnel will be required to present valid identification in order to access polling stations and the Tally Center.

“Any individual found to be doing the duties of an observer or agent without due accreditation, will be prosecuted in accordance with the law.” Warns Byabakama

The EC has established a query/complaints Desk at the District Council Hall, Omoro District Local Government, for the purpose of receiving and handling any complaints that may arise during the by-elections and this will operate on polling day, from 7am up to 4pm.

It has also provided the following telephone numbers to enable the electorate raise any issue of concern for prompt handling:

  1. 0800 300122 Toll free number
  2. 0800 300125 Toll free number
  3. 0392 004530 Non-free/chargeable number
  4. 0392 745203 Non-free/chargeable number

The Commission has further established a media center at the same venue, namely, District Council Hall, Omoro District Local Government, for purposes of co-ordinating information and providing updates on issues and progress of the electoral process.

The District Council Hall, Omoro District Local Government has been gazetteed as the election results Tally Center for this by-election.

“Please note that access to the Tally Center will be restricted to only authorised persons who shall have the respective accreditation tags/cards.” Notes Byabakama

He adds that all persons participating in the above electoral exercise shall be required to comply with guidelines issued by the EC in accordance with the Government of Uganda and Ministry of Health measures against the spread of COVID-19. This includes observing social distancing and wearing of masks.

Byabakama appeals to candidates, their agents and supporters to conduct themselves in accordance with the Law, and the guidelines issued by the Electoral Commission for the by-elections.

He says Uganda Police Force, has made adequate preparations to ensure a peaceful and secure electoral environment warning that
any electorate that conducts him or her self unlawfully will be decisively dealt with.

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