Independent Members of
parliament have faulted the National Consultative Forum-NCF for ignoring them
while drafting guidelines that directly affect them.
NCF held a six day’s consultative meeting at
Best Western Hotel in Entebbe with different political organizations and actors
on the draft guidelines seeking to regulate independent candidates ahead of the
The guidelines are meant to operationalize
article 72 section 5 of the Presidential and Parliamentary
The draft, which entails among others the interpretation,
eligibility to stand as an independent candidate, the identification of symbols
to be used in the campaign and election, restriction of campaign funding from
foreign sources and duties of an independent candidate to offer information
pertain his credentials for vying for an elective post to the electoral
commission among others.
The forum also set a time frame of between April and
September 30th within, which such a bill should be brought to
parliament for approval and enactment.
The leader of Independent candidates in Parliament, Andrew
Aja Baryayanga wonders why the NCF decided to draft the guidelines without
However, the Deputy Attorney General, Mwesigwa
Rukutana, the acting Chairperson of the National Consultative Forum, said independents
were also consulted and their views taken into consideration.
//Cue in: “Definitely, the independents …
Cue out: … their voices heard.”//
The participants who included representatives
from 28 political parties and organizations focused mainly on the financing and
the period within, which independents should register as candidates in the
The participants led by Gerald Siranda, the DP
Secretary General also want all independent candidates to declare their assets
and sources of campaign financing before the start of the campaigns.
indicated that such reforms don’t require amending the constitution, saying
they will be executed by Parliament as long as a draft bill is presented before
cabinet and parliament later.