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2021 general elections

2021 Elections To Cost Shs900 Billion

The Electoral Commission has unveiled strategic election road map for the 2021/22 General Elections in which it estimates to spend over 868 billion on organizing the polls from the local administrate level to the presidency.

The road map will guide Electoral Commission activities until elections take place between January 10, and February 8, 2021.

The new cost is double the money spent on organizing the 2016 elections which cost the country 419.9bn.

EC Chairman Justice Simon Byamakama, said the above budgeted cost does not include wage bills, general finance and administration costs and the planned relocation of the Commission headquarters from the swampy Jinja Road.

However, Sam Rwakoojo, Secretary to the Commission, noted that the new figure is a result of the new number of voters and polling stations that have resulted from the creation of new districts.

“In the 2016 elections, Uganda had 112 districts but these have since grown to 141. The Municipalities are now 80 up from 39 in 2016, the polling stations will be 35,000 up from 28,010 in 2016. In the same light, the commission estimates that there will be 19.4million voters in 2021 up from 15.3m that were registered to vote in 2016,” he explained.

Rwakoojo further noted that although government has concentrated on creating new districts, it has not created an electoral budget for them.

“Each new district requires Shs513m to be operationalized but from experience, it has been the same perpetual under funding story which has been a great challenge to the commission to deliver its constitutional mandate,” he added.

He reasoned that the road will help commission avoid similar electoral challenges met in 2016 and speed up implementation of Supreme Court recommendations resulting from the Amama Mbabazi petition.

Justice Byabakama noted that the road map is a reminder to all stakeholders such as political parties, in the electoral process to start planning to ensure a smooth democratic process.

He however warned that t the road map is not green light for parties to kick-start campaigns saying that such activities must follow an approved programme that is regulated by the Commission.

According to the new road map, the updated national register will be displayed from March 19 – April 8, 2020, nomination of candidates at district level will follow between July 20 – July 24, 2020, and nominations for Members of Parliament will commence on August 12 followed closely by the nomination of presidential candidates on August 20th.

The campaigns will kick off officially on July 30, 2020 beginning with LC candidates, then MPs on August 16, and later the presidential candidates will hit the road on September 2nd.

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