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FDC fails to resolve Kampala speakership impasse

By Brian Mayanja

Added 29th December 2019 10:41 AM

The battle for the speakership within FDC is between Doreen Nyanjura, a Makerere University councillor and Abubaker Kawalya of Rubaga North

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Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago has already written to all political parties with councillors at City Hall to forward names of their candidates. File Photo

The battle for the speakership within FDC is between Doreen Nyanjura, a Makerere University councillor and Abubaker Kawalya of Rubaga North

In less than two weeks, Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) councillors will elect the city speaker from among them.

Majority of the councillors belong to the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) and, therefore, the party is expected to take the seat.

According to the new law, signed into force by President Yoweri Museveni on November 28, KCCA will now have the office of the speaker and deputy speaker, who will be responsible for handling the legislative roles.

The Lord Mayor will now only perform executive roles.

The battle for the speakership within FDC is between Doreen Nyanjura, a Makerere University councillor and Abubaker Kawalya of Rubaga North. However, the party and the councillors have not agreed on the flag-bearer.

The Lord Mayor, Erias Lukwago, has already written to all political parties with councillors at City Hall to forward names of their candidates for the posts. New Vision has learnt that FDC has not submitted a name.

Instead, it instituted a committee to resolve the impasse between the party leadership and some of the councillors.

According to a source, the committee will present its findings when the National Executive Committee (NEC) sits.

“The committee met both the councillors and Lukwago, but I am not at liberty to reveal details,” a party official said.

Out of the 34 KCCA councillors, FDC has 18, NRM has seven, DP has two and the rest are independents.

Caucus vote

The FDC councillors’ caucus sat and voted Kawalya as its candidate. Kawalya got 11 votes, Oliver Namazzi scored one and Nyanjura got no vote.

However, sources say that FDC is uncomfortable with Kawalya, who markets himself as a People Power supporter, a pressure group led by Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine.

 

“People Power is one of our opponents and anybody associating with it cannot be our party flag-bearer of FDC,” Ismail Ddamba, the caucus spokesperson, said.

Ddamba said party officials cautioned that Lukwago’s views must be considered before any decision is made since he is an ally.

Multiple sources revealed that Lukwago is backing Nyanjura for the job because the two are serving in Besigye’s People’s Government.

Lukwago declined to discuss the matter when contacted.

FDC’s national youth leader confirmed that discussion on the issue has now been pushed to January 7.

Divided opposition

The speakership slot has sharply divided the Opposition. A group of FDC youth recently stormed City Hall and ordered councillors, who had met to discuss the speakership to get out of the meeting.

Those who refused to get out, including Kawalya, were beaten. An assault case was reported at Central Police Station.

The incident attracted condemnation from opposition parties, including Alliance for National Transformation national co-ordinator Gen. Mugisha Muntu.

The beating of councillors forced Ibrahim Kasozi, the Makindye East MP, to storm City Hall, asking for an explanation from the deputy Lord Mayor, Sarah Kanyike.

Risk of division

The speaker and the deputy slots will be voted through secret ballot.

Bruhan Byaruhanga, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) candidate, says he will sail through, given the divisions within FDC.

“If they impose a person that majority councillors do not want, it will be a done deal for me. The angry ones will vote me in protest,” he said.

However, some FDC councillors told New Vision that they would be reluctant to vote Byaruhanga because he engineered the impeachment of Lukwago in November 2013.

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