By Cyprian Musoke, William Rwebembera and Nathan Etengu
SECOND deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Public Service Henry Muganwa Kajura has lost the NRM primaries for Bugahya county, Hoima district, to arch-rival former Kasese RDC James Kiiza Rwebembera.
NRM Electoral Commission chairman Ruhakana Rugunda, who personally intervened to secure the final results, said Rwebembera garnered 4473 votes, while Kajura got 4162. The other two contenders in the race were Kyakadongo, and a former URA Commissioner, Steven Byakutaaga.
The elections were conducted amid allegations of malpractices and violence, leading to their cancellation in four parishes of Tonya, Kisabagwa, Butebere and Kyabisagazi. Rugunda led a team from Kampala that concluded the exercise in the four parishes. Kajura, who is also the Hoima district NRM-O chairman, has been winning the Bugahya seat since the National Resistance Council polls in 1989.
â€œWe appeal for calm and reconciliation because ultimately, the winner is the NRM candidate. We would like to ask the media to tell the people to be calm such that internal democracy and the unity of the Movement is maintained,â€ Rugunda said.
Asked whether Kajura had conceded defeat, Rugunda said, â€œHe would be the best person to answer that, but if you are defeated in a race, certainly you donâ€™t jubilate.â€
Officials from Kajuraâ€™s office came to The New Vision offices, claiming that Kajura had won.
All ministers in Bunyoro lost their seats. Pensions minister Benigna Mukiibi lost Kibaale district to Juliet Kabonesa Ssekitoleko. State minister for lands Baguma Isoke lost Buyanja to Matiya Kasaija of the NRM secretariat, while in Masindi little known Erisa Kaahwa beat Phillip Byaruhanga.
Elsewhere, Rugunda also declared Dr. Stephen Malinga the winner of the Butebo county parliamentary primaries held on December 8, against Dr. Patrick Mutono.
â€œUpon consideration of the returns from Butebo county and further verification of these results by the commission, you are hereby confirmed as the winner,â€ Rugunda said in a letter to Malinga.
In Kapchorwa, all the incumbent MPs, including the longest-serving Tingey county MP, Dr. Stephen Chebrot, lost in the polls. Ends