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Museveni Could Have an Upper Hand in West Nile.

According to Harold Acemah, a retired Ambassador and political analyst in Arua, NRM has made many empty promises that tend to be believed by people. He further says use of money and intimidation by security forces tactics that NRM used in the past election to win voters are being employed once again
Museveni won all West Nile Districts in 2016

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In the 2016 presidential election, Museveni won all West Nile districts, polling 75 percent in Zombo, his best score in the region. And his lowest score was in Moyo where he polled 58.9 percent against 34.38 percent that his closest challenger, Dr. Kizza Besigye of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) polled. 

Museveni polled more than 60 percent in Arua, Nebbi and Koboko, Yumbe, Adjumani and Maracha districts. Besigye’s best scores in the region were in districts of Koboko where he polled 35.56 percent, Arua where he scored 34.22 percent and Moyo where he polled 34.38 percent.  

From the 2001 presidential election, Museveni has been clawing away at Besigye’s support in West Nile districts such as Arua and Nebbi. For instance; Besigye scored 54 percent in Arua in 2001, he increased it to 56.9 percent. But Museveni chipped away at Besigye's support in 2011 scoring 55 percent in 2011 and increasing his score to 65 percent in 2016.

Besigye’s score in Yumbe has also reduced from 57 percent of the 2001 election to 23 in 2016.  West Nile voters and political analysts say money, organizational capacity and promises by the ruling party will continue to influence election outcomes in favor of the ruling NRM government. 

According to Harold Acemah, a retired Ambassador and political analyst in Arua, NRM has made many empty promises that tend to be believed by people. He further says use of money and intimidation by security forces tactics that NRM used in the past election to win voters are being employed once again. Acemah says there is no lesson Ugandans have learnt from the past elections because of short memory. He says NRM keeps promising same things to West Nile voters who embrace it.  

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Jaberi Andiga, a veteran politician and a supporter of NRM says since its inception and takeover of power in 1986 the party has used money to mobilize and win elections in Arua.

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Also, Isa Kato the former Mayor Arua Municipality says because of increased poverty levels over the years in West Nile, money has continued to control voters in all the past and upcoming elections. However, he says money may not win NRM much support in this election as it did in the past elections.

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But Hajj. Abdulhakim Molly a voter in Arua who has participated in the last four elections voting for the opposition says people are stuck with opposition in the region because they are showing dissatisfaction with NRM that has   marginalized West Nile and failed to develop infrastructure.

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Kassiano Wadri, who is the MP Arua, says rigging by officials is a big factor in determining the outcome.

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With Dr. Besigye bowing out of the elections, Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine of National Unity Platform (NUP), is expected to win substantial support in the area. West Nile is symbolic for Bobi Wine because it's where his driver Yasin Kawuma was killed by security agencies in 2018 on the final day of campaigns for Arua Municipality parliamentary seat, and Wadri whom Bobi Wine backed won.

West Nile is also the region where Bobi Wine launched his presidential campaigns. It is also in this region where Bobi Wine endorsed an NRM candidate, Charles Ayume, NRM candidate for Koboko MP seat.

  

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