APRIL 29, 2010: MP's Pass Presidential Elections Bill

MP's Pass Presidential Elections Bill
SOURCE: New Vision
By Catherine Bekunda and Joyce Namutebi
Kampala — The presidential amendments Bill was passed yesterday.

The Bill, tabled in December last year, seeks to prohibit candidates and their agents from contributing to fundraising and giving out donations during campaigns.

It further provides for the Electoral Commission to declare a candidate unopposed if his sole rival withdraws or is disqualified from the race.

Earlier on Wednesday, NRM and opposition MPs failed to reach a consensus.

Several sections of the Bill were put on hold pending a decision to be made by the Inter-party Organisation for Dialogue (IPOD).

IPOD consists of members from the NRM and opposition parties with representation in parliament.

One section that was deferred was on whether political parties, political organisations and independent candidates shall have a right to monitor the management, storage and transportation of election materials.

Shadow attorney general Erias Lukwago (DP) had suggested that all candidates or their agents be provided with serial numbers of ballot papers for each polling station and the seals of each ballot box.

Another section was on whether assistance should be given to illiterate voters.