EC confirms Over 95,000 Registered Voters to participate in Dokolo by-election

By Ouni Jaspher

Dokolo March 20

In line with the commission’s tradition and practice, Justice Byabakama Mugenyi Simon, the chairperson electoral commission (EC) held a proposing meeting or briefing with various stakeholders yesterday to update them on the status of preparations for the upcoming by-election.

This meeting served as an important platform for the commission to not only provide information on the preparations but also to hear from the stakeholders themselves.

The Dokolo by-election holds great significance as it represents two categories of leaders or positions – the woman representative for Dokolo District in Parliament and local government councilors in certain sub-counties where positions are vacant. 

One of the key updates shared by the chairperson is the final polling register for Dokolo District. This register contains a total of 95,683 voters, out of which females make up 52.12% while males make up 47.88%. 

Furthermore, the chairperson said Political parties with candidates in the by-election have been granted permission to deploy up to five observers per sub-county, upon request to the commission. 

In addition, these observers are required to limit their activities and presence only in the sub-counties where they have been accredited, and not roam around from one sub-county to another.

According to Byabakama the EC has also granted all political parties the permission to have up to five observers at the tally center. 

He thanked the Police Force in ensuring that all candidates and their supporters adhere to these guidelines. 

Byabakama also outlined the schedule for election day, with polling stations officially opening at 7:00 a.m. and closing at 4:00 p.m. However, he made it clear that if there are voters still waiting in line at 4 p.m., they will be allowed to cast their votes.

This is because, by law, the presiding officer cannot begin the voting process until a minimum of 10 registered voters are present.

However, during the meeting, Byabakama Mugenyi confirmed that the office of the returning officer Dokolo received a withdrawal letter from one of the candidates, Lalama Hanna Grace, who was running as an independent candidate. 

“Her withdrawal has been formalized according to the commission’s procedures, but unfortunately, it was already too late to reprint the ballot papers, and her name and picture will still appear on the ballot” he said.

Justice Byabakama Mugenyi Simon has emphasized that voters should not cast their vote for Lalama, and any vote in her favor will be considered invalid. The commission assured the public that all necessary steps have been taken to ensure that this will not affect the credibility of the election.

As we enter the final stretch of the Dokolo by-election, we assure you that all necessary measures have been put in place to guarantee a peaceful and transparent process. We urge all voters in the district to exercise their democratic right tomorrow and cast their vote for the candidate of their choice. Byabakama Mugenyi Simon said.

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