KAMPALA – The National Unity Platform is currently under public scrutiny for allegedly segregating against people due to their religious affiliations.
This was after documents showing results of the vetting process between Lord Mayor contenders Joseph Mayanja alias Chameleone and Latif Ssebagala that have since gone viral on social media.
The documents indicate that singer Joseph Mayanja, alias Jose Chameleone was dumped for being Catholic in favor of Latif Sebagala, a Muslim.
The NUP vetting committee announced Kawempe North legislator, Latif Ssebaggala as the party ticket bearer for the Kampala Lord Mayoral race, beating Chameleone to it.
The committee observed that being a Catholic, the singer’s appeal to voters in Kampala is small compared to Latif Ssebaggala whose religion is relevant to majority voters.
“The denomination is not very appealing to majority voters,” the vetting committee documents read.
Latif scored 8/10 when it came to religion, with comments indicating that Islam is a denomination relevant to majority voters. Chameleone on the other hand scored 3/10 with comments indicating that he is a Catholic, a denomination that is not appealing to the majority voters.
The assessment forms further indicated that whereas in terms of name recognition, Ssebaggala got five out of 10 for being an MP with good standing, Mayanja on the other side got three.
“Without the name Chameleone, the candidate is not recognizable,” the vetting committee noted in the remarks.
The committee also noted that whereas the Latif contributes both political and financial support to the National Unity Platform, the singer-cum-politician has offered little to them.
“Contribution is only in music.”
The Baliwa singer also lost the popularity vote to Latif when he scored 4/10 for having what they called “little voter confidence.”
In terms of exposure, the committee noted that Mayanja is only known in East Africa, compared to Ssebaggala who has connections in the Middle East.
Several Ugandans have since taken to social media to call out the new party, pointing out that segregating against people due to their religious affiliations is wrong and should not be tolerated.
NUP spokesperson Joel Ssenyonyi in an interview recently commented on the party primaries especially on the Lord Mayoral Race saying the party committee made a wide-ranging assessment on who should be the NUP candidate for the position, between the two candidates.
“Our team was sent on ground to ascertain what people are saying because this is People Power. People must be involved in the selection process. These teams were in every corner of the constituency interacting with the people. They may not go everywhere in the constituency but they reach in a good number of places, so Hon Latif Ssebagala had an edge over Joseph Mayanja,” he said on Sunday.
Much as Ms Mercy Walukamba, the NUP chairperson, Election Management Committee called upon all aggrieved parties to appeal against the decision, Chameleone next cause of action still remains unknown as the singer has not come out yet to make a comment.
Joseph Mayanja, aka Chameleone who was initially subscribing to the Democratic Party left it for the then People Power (now NUP).
It remains unclear whether Chameleone will remain in NUP and support the party’s causes and quest for change with its principal Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu or return to DP and request for the same ticket.