The Police in Mbale city fired live bullets and teargas to disperse rowdy supporters of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) that attempted to destabilize the party primary elections in the Northern Division.
The supporters suspected to be for one of the candidates, Gershom Wambede Sizomu, stormed the polling station and attempted to force themselves into the polling centre.
The group of youth stormed the gate and demanded the elections be cancelled, claiming that the ground was not leveled.
The group was also protesting a move by the FDC electoral commission to block their candidate from entering the polling centre.
This forced the Police under the command of the Mbale District Police Commander, Fed Ahimbisibwe, to intervene but all in vain. The Police had to apply reasonable force and started firing tear gas and live bullets.
Business and traffic in the division came to standstill and several residents in the area fled their houses while shops closed for fear of being robbed by the fleeing youths.
Wambede then asked his supporters to leave the polling station and headed to his offices at Tobbin Health Centre on Rumi-Mbale road where he held a press conference and declared that he had quit FDC and was going to contest as an Independent candidate.
Peace returned and the electoral commission for FDC proceeded with the voting exercise in the absence of Wambede.
The exercise had four contestants; Peter Gidudu who got two votes, Swelle Mafabi got no vote, Wambede got 13 votes while Wanyoto got 66 votes and was declared the winner.
Wanyoto held a press briefing and thanked the delegates for entrusting him with the party flag and called upon the party supporters to do the same in the general elections.