Unlike before, the two are to face off in joint campaigns through sub-regional meetings.
ELECTION WATCH | FDC
KAMPALA- The Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), the leading opposition party has finally nominated the national party chairman Ambassador Wasswa Birigwa and party President Patrick Amuriat for the party's presidential flag bearer.
Unlike before, the two are to face off in joint campaigns through sub-regional meetings which are to be organized by the party's electioneering body.
At every sub-region, the aspirants will be meeting the party delegates in those areas to campaign.
The delegates would then vote immediately and results announced by the party's Chief Electoral Commissioner. The exercise will take 21 days in the 21 sub-regions of FDC.
Whoever, goes through, will be the party presidential flag bearer for the most top position in the country.
Birigwa and Amuriat were nominated by the party electioneering body at the party headquarters and flagged off to kick start their search for votes from delegates.
The event took place at the party headquarters in Najjanankumbi, a Kampala suburb yesterday.
It was attended by party members and officials including Kibuuka Mukalazi (vice party national chairman), Joyce Ssebugwawo (vice president Buganda region), Nandala Mafabi (secretary-general), and the Commissioner to the Parliament and Buhweju County MP Francis Mwijukye among others.
Both candidates were welcomed by their supporters, singing praising songs for them.
The commission first scrutinized and verified all their documents before they were nominated by the party's chief electoral commissioner, Boniface Toterebuka Bamwenda.
"Having scrutinized and verified the documents of both candidates, I now declare the two as duly nominated candidates for the party presidential flag bearer," he said.
Both candidates were given certificates of nomination for the presidential flag bearer.
At the same event, the party also announced vice president Eastern Uganda, Salam Musumba as the Acting national party chairperson and Ssebugwawo, as the Ag. party president until elections are done.
Previously, candidates would traverse the country in different districts campaigning among party delegates and later delegates would converge in one place to vote.
"We are not having normal campaigns because of the COVID-19 pandemic. We resolved to have relatively smaller meetings in the 21 FDC sub-regions in-line with the Ministry of Health, guidelines to avoid the spread of the pandemic.
The aspirants will be campaigning at these meetings and delegates will vote that very day," the party deputy publicist, John Kikonyogo said.
He explained that the counting of votes will be done at every sub-regional meeting after voting, and declaration of results done immediately.
The exercise is to last for 21 days and will be climaxed at the party headquarters where the aspirants will interface with the members of the National Executive Committee (NEC) and Members of Parliament, who will also cast their votes, before announcing the flag bearer.
The party has a total of 1,210 delegates countrywide.
Birigwa promised to boost the economy to improve people's livelihood, improve the deteriorating education system, and the health sector.
He attributed the high unemployment to the poor education system where children study and graduate without relevant skills.
Birigwa noted that with 85% of the population dependent on agriculture, he intends to invest more in the sector to promote commercial/modern agriculture and value addition.
"We need to adapt the concept of one village; one item to boost production like in Japan. We need to cluster to easily attract investors to set factories in various areas, assured supply of raw materials and create a market for our people," he added.
Amuriat said he wants to protect the security of education in the country, which has rendered many youths idle despite having qualifications.
"Without meaningful education, the country will never develop. What do we tell people about Universal Education (UPE/USE), where people graduate when they cannot speak English. That's why our graduates end up as bodaboda riders, night watchmen, and drug abusers," he said.
He said once given an opportunity to serve Ugandans, he plans to reduce the consumptive expenditures, increase the agriculture budget to over 15%, promote youth employment, and health services for all.