AFTER the initial extension of the deadline for updating the national voters register, the Electoral Commission (EC) has re-extended the exercise by seven days, ending on May 11
By Nicholas Wassajja
AFTER the initial extension of the deadline for updating the national voters register, the Electoral Commission (EC) has re-extended the exercise by seven days, ending on May 11.
The update process which started on 7th April 2015 up to 30th April was extended to the end of Monday but before the close of business, EC considered re-extending with the aim of generating a fresh voter’s register, ahead of the 2016 polls.
EC deputy spokesperson Paul Bukenya while confirming to New Vision said that the move is meant to capture more legible voters to update their details ahead of the elections.
“Very many people are now queuing up to update their details and we cannot leave them unattended to just because we extended the deadline previously,” Bukenya who could not give further details by press time explained.
The particulars for the national voters register were extracted from the database of the National Identity Card project, in which Ugandans above the age of 16 registered to get identity cards.
The new national voters register will be used in the upcoming general elections at all levels including the presidential elections.
Speaking last week during a news conference, the EC secretary Sam Rwakojo said that the extension would not affect the commission’s budget.
The EC roadmap indicates that presidential and parliamentary candidates will start campaigning between October 12 – February 15 and actual polls will be between February 12 and March 12 next year.
The Citizens’ Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) in partnership with the EC which is responsible for voter education welcomed the extension saying that it will enable all interested Ugandans exercise their right to vote.
Crispy Kaheru the CCEDU coordinator said that, “although the extensions demonstrate a good intention by EC to give an opportunity for everyone to participate in the process, the Commission must consistently demonstrate that it has a clear plan that takes the country to the next elections.”
He appealed to Ugandans to use the re-extension to verify their details if at all they are interested in voting. The exercise is being done at parish level.
Kaheru however implored the Electoral Commission to handle any reported administrative, technical and logistical challenges affecting the update process in a timely manner so as to ensure that all interested citizens participate fully in the exercise.
Electoral Commission extends voters registration again