Don’t vote Antagonistic leaders from Bavumi People Power, says Bantariza

Col Shaban Bantariza

The deputy executive director of the Uganda Media Centre, Col Shaban Bantariza, has urged voters not to elect leaders from Bavumi People Power who have joined politics with the agenda of abusing President Yoweri Museveni because they will be starved.

He said he has no problem with people voting opposition leaders as long as they embrace government programmes that are aimed at bringing services to the communities.

Bantariza reminded voters that President Museveni has the key to open and close a “food store”.

“There are many Lutela (an Acholi word to mean leaders) who oppose every decision the Government takes,” he said.

“When a decision was made to deploy Uganda People’s Defence Forces soldiers in Somalia at the inception of the programme, some Members of Parliament were completely against the decision. Some even promised to kill a chicken whenever each of our soldiers dies. So you can imagine such kind of leaders who are not human at all,” Bantariza said.

He made the call on Tuesday during the training of all the LC 1 and LC2 chairpersons as well as village court committees in Nwoya district on their roles and responsibilities.

Bantariza, who is also in charge of sensitisation of Ugandans in the office of the National Resistance Movement (NRM) chairperson took a swipe at legislators who claim that their cardinal role in Parliament is to make laws instead of lobbying for good “food” such as clean water, roads and electricity.

The role of leaders

Ambrose Mwesigye, who is also from the same office, told the village and parish leaders that their role is to ensure their areas are secure.

“The National Security Council Act recognises you as the chairpersons of security. It is not about having a gun but safeguarding everything that is in the interest of the public,” Mwesigye said.

He said these range from roads, monitoring of drugs and other enterprises. Mwesigye said when NRM supports such programmes, the ideal end product is poverty alleviation and improved household income.

Geoffrey Azuma, one of the facilitators, cautioned the chairpersons against levying any fee for presiding over mediation meetings, adding that it’s not provided for in the Local Government Act.

Azuma, who is also the district information officer, warned that the aggrieved party can decide to take legal action and the perpetrator will be brought to book.

Patrick Okello Oryema, the district chairman, discouraged the other leaders against drafting bylaws that contravene the international human rights standards such as administering heavy punishments, which by law is criminal.

Peace Judith Acan, the NRM flag-bearer for Nwoya district Woman MP, said she was compelled to have the leaders trained because the majority of them were unaware of the existing laws as well as their roles and responsibilities.

Samuel Opio, the LC2 chairperson of Amaa parish in Koch Goma sub-county, acknowledged that since taking up office, majority of them do not have stamps which are supposed to be provided by the sub-county.

“Many of my colleagues have fallen into problems because we were not inducted. Otherwise, this kind of training should continue to help us become better leaders,” he said.