The leaders maintain their earlier position to boycott all activities of the Electoral Commission until the President resolves the conflict between the Iteso and Jopadhola tribes.
PIC: Residents of Tororo County displaying placards during an aborted meeting with the National Electoral Commission chairman last year in Mukujju. (Credit: Faustin Odeke)
LOCAL COUNCIL ELECTIONS
TORORO- Residents of Tororo County have resolved to boycott participating in the forthcoming LCI, LCII and women council elections until when the President resolves the Tororo conflict.
Speaking during a meeting at Mukuju county headquarters recently, the Tororo county North MP, Annet Nyaketcho, said the resolution is binding with the President’s pronouncement of no holding the byelections of Tororo LC5 chairperson to allow him resolve Tororo conflict once and for all.
They warned the electoral commission officials not to dare sending any of their officials into the county and the contested Tororo municipality to conduct any elections. Early last year, they also held the chairman of electoral commison Simon Byabakama and his entourage hostage in Mukuju when they met the residents a head of planned LC5 chairperson elections which were eventually called off.
During a security meeting on Saturday held at the office of the resident district commissioner, the leaders from Tororo County disagreed with the proposal being fronted by the district security committee to allow interested parties in the county participate in the forth coming local council 1 and 2 elections.
The leaders maintained their earlier position to boycott all activities of THE electoral commission until such a time that government resolves the outstanding conflict between the Iteso and Jopadhola tribes.
An attempt by Mukuju sub county LCIII chairperson Oguti Padde to support the electoral process during the Mukuju meeting nearly costed him his life after the angry residents descending on him like a swam of proved bees.
The Saturday meeting chaired by the chairperson of the district security committee [RDC] Martine Orochi was summoned to persuade leaders to go and convince their electorates to revoke their earlier position of boycotting all activities of the electoral commission.
According to the RDC, the meeting was based on the intelligence information that there were already mixed reactions towards the elections with others threatening to destroy elections materials as well as harm election officers.
Orochi disclosed that amidst the earlier position that the leaders had come up with, some members of the community within the county had expressed interest to participate in the elections and as security, they saw it wise to calm the situation before it goes out of hand.
Despite efforts by the RDC to convince the leaders to calm down their tempers and accept to participate in the elections, the angered leaders stood by their position saying that this would betray the interest of the people of Tororo County from pursuing their desired quest for a separate district curved from the current Tororo.
The latest comes after both the Jopadhola and Iteso are anxiously waiting for the return of their delegations who travelled to London last week to collect the colonial map that intends to prove the location and ownership of the Municipality upon which the President will take a decision to district is split the mother district.
Joseph Joe Oburu, one of the opinion leaders in the county said the ground is not yet conducive for any election to be held in Tororo county until President Yoweri Museveni pronounces his position on to the request by people of Tororo county to have the last counties of old Bukedi granted independent districts as per their colonial boundaries.
Other counties that were elevated into districts include Busia, Butaleja, Pallisa, Budaka some of which have further been split into other smaller districts such as Butebo and Kibuku.
George Alfred Obore, the former LC3 chairperson of Malaba Town council, who doubles as chairperson, dismissed the circulating rumours that some people in Tororo county want to participate in the LC elections adding that those agitating for elections are from disgruntled opposition parties who think that these could be a chance for them to snatch leadership positions.
John Emiriat, the Molo sub county LC3 chairperson said there is no need to have elections when the President has not yet pronounced his position adding that these may undermine his earlier position.
Francis Olweny, the district production secretary, said anybody hailing from Tororo County and is pretending not to be part of the demand must be having health problem that requires serious attention.
Peter Langalangala, the Mukuju sub-county district councillor rubbished earlier claims by Mukuju sub-county chairman Oguti Padde that his electorates wanted the elections to go on.