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Opposition in Gulu Confident of Victory Against NRM

Gulu and most parts of Acholi sub-region have for the last five consecutive Presidential elections since 1996 predominantly voted for the opposition candidates.
President Yoweri Museveni waves to the crowd during Gulu University’s 15th graduation ceremony in January - PPU Courtesy File Photo

Audio 4

Opposition politicians in Gulu have expressed confidence of maintaining their dominance in Gulu City despite attempts by the National Resistance Movement – NRM party flag bearer Yoweri Kaguta Museveni making inroads in the region.

On Monday, President Museveni campaigned in Gulu City seeking a new mandate to extend his mandate as Presidential campaigns enter the eighth day ahead of general elections in 2021.

Tony Kitara, of the Democratic Party, observes that while the NRM government has commendably built good road infrastructure in Acholi, the achievement will not translate into votes because of disunity in the party.

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Betty Aol Ocan, the Gulu District Woman MP (FDC) who doubles as the Leader of Opposition in Parliament explains that there is still abject poverty coupled with poor social services which will still taint NRM’s image in Acholi.

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Walter Akena, a researcher with Agency for Cooperation and Research in Development (ACORD) Uganda thinks the Democratic Party under Norbert Mao would have been the main challenger of President Museveni but claims the party’s grassroots structures are in disarray.

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But Francis Odoki, an NRM party official explains that while the 2021 polls appear complex, President Museveni is poised to win with a landslide victory after delivering on his key promises to Acholi people especially on good road networks in the region.

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Gulu and most parts of Acholi sub-region have for the last five consecutive Presidential elections since 1996 predominantly voted for the opposition candidates.

For instance, in 2006, Dr Kiiza Besigye defeated President Museveni in most districts of Acholi garnering 82 per cent in Gulu; 75 per cent in Kitgum and 77 per cent in Pader. In 2011, Democratic Party’s Norbert Mao reaped 42 per cent votes against Museveni’s 38 per cent.