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Battle for Space Fueling Defacing of Campaign Posters in Gulu :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Battle for Space Fueling Defacing of Campaign Posters in Gulu

Hundreds of posters were placed on wall fences, electricity poles and any visible area across the city prior to the start of Parliamentary nominations on Thursday. But they were all removed or replaced under the cover of darkness.
20 Oct 2020 14:13
Campaign posters visbibly defaceed by vandals in Gulu City - Photo by Dominic Ochola

Audio 3

The battle for space has resulted in defacing of campaign posters in Gulu City.

Hundreds of posters are plastered on wall fences, electricity poles and any visible area across the city. However, they are removed or replaced under the cover of darkness.

Section 83 (2) of the Parliamentary Election act 2001, states that “Any person who maliciously defaces or removes or tears, any election poster of any nominated candidate, commits an offence and is liable, on conviction to a fine not exceeding thirty currency points or imprisonment not exceeding one year or both.”

Along several streets of Gulu City, hundreds of posters belonging to Betty Aol Ocan, the incumbent Gulu District Woman MP (FDC) who is now aspiring for Gulu City MP were defaced and replaced by that of her opponent, Shaka Nyapolo of the National Resistance Movement- NRM party.

Posters for the incumbent Gulu Municipality MP Lyandro Komakech have been placed on Martin Ojara Mapenduzi's pictures in areas of Kanyagogo Parish, Kirombe, Lacor and areas of For God. The two are battling for Gulu City West Division Parliamentary seat.

In Gulu City East Division, Nancy Atimango's posters were replaced by her rival’s posters. They include Emmanuel Mwaka Lutukumoi, John Bosco Uhuru and Rev. Fr. Charles Onen, all of whom are contesting under the independent ticket.

Atimango, the National Resistance Movement-NRM candidate for the Gulu City East Division Parliamentary says that rival camps descended on all her posters are defaced them, an act she says is disturbing and also stifling her financial resources because she now needs to print new posters.

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Atimango is facing five other candidates for the Gulu City East Division Parliamentary seat. They include Christopher Okidi (DP), Rev. Fr Charles Onen (Independent), former Lira RDC Emmanuel Lutukumoi (Independent), rights activist John Bosco Uhuru (Independent) and Caesar Rubangakene, another independent candidate.

Ocan, the Leader of Opposition in Parliament – LOP, also four-time Gulu District Woman MP says defacing her posters isn't new because she is a threat against the three other new political entrants for the Gulu City Woman MP seat.  

In Amuru, Lucy Akello, the Amuru District Woman MP attributed the vice to ignorance, lack of harsh punitive measures and low level of civic awareness. 

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Benson Obete, the EC  Registrar for Gulu District explains that all Parliamentary candidates who printed out their campaign posters before being duly nominated have done so illegally which also misleads their supporters.

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The three other rivals include Jolly Laker Okot, the former Director of Invisible Children contesting on DP; Shaka Nyapolo of the National Resistance Movement and Rosemary Atimango, a former employee of the Uganda Revenue Authority – URA (Independent).