KAMPALA — Leading opposition party, Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has fired three of its prominent members including National Political Mobilizer Ingrid Turinawe, Darius Tweyambe and Winnie Babihuga after they defied the party constitution and stood as independent candidates after losing out in the primaries.
“The entire public is therefore informed that these independent candidates are not members of FDC and have no moral authority to act on behalf of FDC,”
FDC secretary general Nathan Nandala Mafabi said in a letter dated December 7.
Article 12(d) on Cessation states that, “If a member joins another party or in an election stands as an independent ceases to be a member of FDC.
FDC also announced its official candidates in Rukungiri were, Dr. Wallen Nuwagaba Tumwine (Rukungiri Municipality), Betty Muzanira (Woman MP Rukungiri), Charles Maharu (Mayor Rukungiri Municipality) Fred Turyamuhweza (Rujumbura Constituency) and Naboth Namanya (Rubabo County).
Nandala also ordered that FDC structures in Rukungiri must only be used to solicit support for FDC and warned that any party members who campaigns for an independent candidate or otherwise shall be dismissed from the party.
“The independent candidates should immediately stop using the FDC sigh and colors otherwise, we shall advise the Electoral Commission to disqualify them,” Nandala warned.
Turinawe lost to Dr Warren Tumwine Nuwagaba in the FDC party primaries.
Nuwagaba polled 130 votes against Turinawe’s 65 votes. The incumbent MP Roland Mugume Kaginda was also defeated.
Turinawe, however, protested the results citing voter bribery and subsequently announced that she would contest as an independent candidate.
According to Turinawe, Nuwagaba allegedly bribed voters with UGX400,000-500,000.
Winnie Babihuga, who lost to the incumbent Betty Muzaniira for the Rukungiri Woman MP seat is also in the race as on the independent ticket.
Babihuga who once served as the District Woman Member of Parliament in 1996-2001 says that she was asked by her supporters to contest.
The FDC says that the decision of Turinawe, Tweyambe and Babihuga will weaken the party’s support in the area.
Last year, political parties through the Inter-Party Organization for Dialogue (IPOD) drafted a proposal barring candidates who contest and lose in political parties from contesting as independents. Leaders of political parties argued that the regulation will end confusion and divisions that candidates plant in political parties when they run as independents