Samuel Walter Lubega Mukaaku, the former independent Presidential candidate is accusing senior Democratic Party officials of frustrating any attempts to resolve the long standing feuds in the party ahead of 2016 elections. He singles out Norbert Mao, the DP president, Mathias Nsubuga, the General Secretary and legal adviser Fred Mukasa Mbidde.
As a result, Lubega says he plans to contest as an independent in 2016. In 2011, Lubega defied the party decision and contested as an independent. This came after Lubega tried in vain to block DP national delegate’s conference in Mbale, which led to the election of Mao. Lubega filed a petition in high court challenging election of Mao on grounds that the delegate’s conference was illegal.
But, Mao secured an order from the Court of Appeal okaying his nomination despite the fact that Lubega’s petition was still pending. Since then, the mainstream DP leadership has been embroiled in wrangles with Lubega. As result, Cardinal Emmanuel Wamala initiated talks in an attempt to reconcile Lubega’s faction and Norbert Mao.
Lubega claims that despite turning up several times for the reconciliatory meetings at Pope Paul memorial community center, Mao and his team don’t show up. He now says that he has suspended his participation in talks saying they are a mockery.
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Lubega says since the Mao group is not committed to resolving the party wrangles, he will work with his supporters and contest as an independent come 2016. He explains that he cannot work with Mao and his group because they are steering DP to a constitutional limbo.
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Mathias Nsubuga, the DP Secretary General has declined to comment on Lubega’s claims. Fred Mukasa Mbidde, the DP legal adviser says the party doesn't miss Lubega since he left and contested as an independent. He told Uganda Radio Network on phone that DP cannot even think of negotiating with Lubega because he is insignificant, adding that, "political forces are now deeply involved in efforts to forge a united front against the regime and thus have no time for such attention seekers”.
Mbidde says DP has never considered talking to Lubega at one time since he was never dismissed from the party. Lubega’s comments come a time when other rebel leaders are questioning the commitment of the party leadership to the ongoing reconciliation talks. Mathias Mpuuga Nsamba, the Masaka Municipality recently expressed similar sentiments.