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Women battle men in political race

By Vision Reporter

Added 11th December 2010 03:00 AM

UGANDA politics has changed with time to favour women who were formerly left in the kitchen. Recently, several women were nominated to vie in constituencies which were formerly represented by men and are staging a spirited fight.

UGANDA politics has changed with time to favour women who were formerly left in the kitchen. Previously, women contested for political positions on the affirmative action but today, more of them are competing against men. Recently, several women were nominated to vie in constituencies which were formerly represented by men and are staging a spirited fight. Saturday Vision JOHN SEMAKULA gives you background information about these women.

Suzan Nampiija (Makindye East)
She is challenging Ibrahim Kasozi of FDC, John Simbwa of NRM and Sebastian Lwanga of DP. Nampiija, the daughter of Ken Lukyamuzi, the President of the Conservative Party (CP), has been representing Rubaga South. She won the seat after Lukyamuzi was barred from participating in elective politics for allegedly breaching the Leadership Code.

Nampiija shifted to Makindye East when Lukyamuzi was cleared by the Supreme Court to take part in elective politics. She trounced men in 2006 and also rides on her father’s popularity.

Amelia Kyambadde (Mawokota North)

The former Principal Private Secretary to President Yoweri Museveni is taking on Peter Clever Mutuluza, the incumbent. Amelia is the NRM’s flag bearer, while Mutuluza, who is also an NRM supporter, is contesting as an independent. Kyambadde is a force to reckon with.

She is said to have won many voters and has the support of NRM big shots. She also has the financial muscle to take on the men. In fact, the race is one of the hottest in the country.

Mary Nalugo Sekiziyivu (Mukono South)

Currently the Mukono Woman MP, Nalugo is taking on a chain of men including former Mukono North MP, the Rev. Peter Bakaluba Mukasa. She was a district councillor for Nama sub-county, before she went to Parliament in 2006. Nalugo has not been vocal in Parliament and by the time she decided to shift to Mukono South several women were eyeing her seat.

But in Mukono South, she is backed by General Duties Minister Janat Mukwaya, who is the incumbent. In the recent primaries, she defeated Bakaluba in the first phase but when the results were cancelled and a re-run organised, she opted to contest as an independent.

Betty Amongi (Oyam South)

Amongi is a political scientist by profession. She has been the woman MP for Apac district for 10 years. She contested as an independent candidate in 2006 and won.

This time around, she beat the Oyam South incumbent Isha Otto in the UPC party primaries, But Otto rejected the results and is now taking her on as an independent candidate. Amongi’s strength is felt on the ground and it would not be a surprise if she emerged winner.

Beatrice Wabudeya (Budadiri East)

The incumbent, Nandala Mafabi of FDC, was recently irked by President Yoweri Museveni’s remarks in Bugisu, that he was against development in Budadiri.

Nandala has won praise for fighting corruption but has got a strong challenger in the Minister for the Presidency, Beatrice Wabudeya. Wabudeya is the woman MP for Sironko district and has been in Parliament for the last 15 years. It is believed that only Wabudeya can beat Mafabi, but that is yet to be seen.

Florence Namayanja (Bukoto East)

The Democratic Party’s Namayanja is the deputy mayor of Kampala. During the nominations, Namayanja’s convoy paralysed Masaka town and swallowed up many of the other convoys. Namayanja’s main challenger is the incumbent, Alintuma Nsambu, the state minister for information and communication technology.

He is not an easy man to defeat and would do what it takes to retain his seat. Nsambu has given schools free computers from his ministry. He has used tactics like arriving at rallies in choppers, which appeals to rural voters. But Namayanja has been a leader at various levels in Kampala for 15 years and can run a spirited campaign against men.

Jennifer Namuyangu, Rainer kafiire (Kibuku County)

During the NRM party primaries, Namuyangu showed that she was a nonsense woman when she almost exchanged blows with UPDF veteran Saleh Kamba, her rival for the seat.

The Woman MP for Pallisa has been in Parliament since 2001. She was also in the NRC (1994-6). She chose to run as an independent after losing to Kamba in the NRM primaries. Rainer Kafire of DP lost the seat to Kamba in 2006.

Proscovia Salaamu Musumba
(Bugabula South)

An iron lady in FDC, Musumba is the party’s vice-chairperson for the eastern region. She is taking on lands state minister Asuman Kiyingi, an independent candidate but a supporter of the NRM and the NRM flag bearer Henry Moris Kibalya. In 2007, she took on men for Kamuli LC5 seat and narrowly lost. This time around, she may exploit the divisions in the NRM camp to trounce the men.

Suzan Nakawuki (Masaka Municipality)

The Busiro East legislator is taking on big names in the race like DP’s John Kawanga, the incumbent and Mathias Mpuuga a former state minister for the youth in Buganda. Nakawuki has been MP for Busiro South.

She entered Parliament on the FDC ticket, having defeated Mike Ssebalu a prominent supporter of NRM. Halfway through her term, she developed a misunderstanding with the FDC leadership and since then, the party has ignored her.

Betty Nambooze, Lillian Nakawesi, Beatrice Iga ( Mukono Municipality)

Betty Nambooze (DP), Lillian Nakawesi (independent) and Beatrice Iga (NRM) are all vying for the seat against Pastor Steven Talemwa and James Kizito.

From the beginning, there were indicators that one of the women would take the seat. The incumbent, Nambooze, stands a higher chance of winning because a big chunk of voters are from the opposition.

Unlike in the past where women sought sympathy from fellow women for votes to beat the men, this time around it is the men who are pleading.

Patience Mubangizi ( Entebbe Municipality)
She is a private consultant on environmental issues and the NRM flagbearer. Mubangizi is taking on Amon Muzoora, a prominent NRM supporter, in the primaries.

Although the High Court had blocked Mubangizi’s nominations over irregularities in the primaries, she is still in the race. Her other rival is the incumbent, Mohammed Kawuma (DP), a teacher.

JAnet Kataaha Museveni
(Ruhama County)

Mrs. Museveni, the incumbent MP and the NRM flag bearer, is taking on several men for the Ruhama seat in Ntungamo.

The Minister of State for Karamoja Affairs took on Augustine Ruzindana, a senior FDC official who was the incumbent in 2006 and defeated him.

Ruzindana was not an easy opponent to beat considering his experience in Ugandan politics. Ruzindana has bounced back alongside Elias Abeine Rukundo (independent) and Hannington Kanyate of Uganda Federal Alliance.

Rose Munyira (Samia Bugwe South)

The former Busia Woman MP is running as an independent, although she is a supporter of the NRM party.

The seat is currently occupied by Sarah Wesike, who is contesting for Kibuku woman MP seat. Munyira’s main challenger is the incumbent’s husband, Stephen Wesike, who represented the constituency before his wife. John Mulimba is the NRM flag bearer.

Kabakumba Masiko (Bujenje County)

She is seeking reelection for a third term and has five rivals who include Dan Kizza (FDC) and Phinehas Kyotasobora ( independent). Kizza is the director of Albert Secondary School in Masindi.

In Masindi district, NRM supporters are divided into two camps. She heads one of the camps and the district chairman, Stephen Birije, leads the other.

Those opposed to Kabakumba were plotting to front a UPDF soldier, Patrick Kasumba, her former ally, but he could not participate because he has not yet quit the army.

There is a group of tenants who are fighting Kabakumba, claiming she bought off the Bujenje estate on which they live and are afraid she will evict them. Kabakumba, who is the national giudance minister, has been in Parliament since 1996 and is still a force to reckon with.

Women battle men in political race

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