The battle for Kasese’s political arena has never been more intricate.
The district has always been a battle ground for intra and inter-party politics since the inception of multi-partysm in Uganda in 2006. Below is the list of candidates and their chances of winning.
Since 2006 the seat has been in the hands of the opposition iron lady Winfred Kizza Nyabahasa who has trounced with ease the ruling NRM candidates in the last elections. She became MP after beating Loyce Biira Bwambale in 2006. But this time round she is facing NRM’s Asiimwe Jane Muhindo Masika Jolly Kateba, an independent who lost in the discredited NRM primaries.
Masika argues that she has all it takes to defeat Winfred Kizza and thus looks at Asiimwe as a spoiler
Lt. Col. Muhindo Mawa the incumbent is defending his seat on the NRM ticket. He came to office five years ago in a hotly contested race with then FDC strongman Christopher Kibanzanga who has since joined NRM and relocated to Bughendera County in Bundibugyo. Mawa is now facing FDC’s Geoffrey Bigogo Sibendire who is a lawyer and popular among the young people who have been questioning Mawa’s academic credentials.
Independent candidate Muhindo Elphase Bukombi is equally in the race and his chances are that he is the only candidate from Busongora County which has always felt marginalized.
Kasese municipality will be a crucial battle ground between NRM and FDC for the control of Kasese. NRM’s Firigo Kambale who hails from Bwera, an area that has dominated the politics of Kasese having won the incumbent James Mbahimba in the NRM primaries is facing Centenary Robert of FDC. Centenary has a truck record of having been born and raised in the municipality and therefore viewed by many as a true home boy.
Kasese is among the few districts in Uganda that has many urban centres; it has three town councils (Mpondwe Lhubiriha, Hima and Lake Katwe) and one municipality. For this article we shall look at Kasese Municipality and Mpondwe -Lhubirigha (Bwera) town council which are the areas that determine who takes what in Kasese.
Incumbent Mayor of Kasese Municipality Godfrey Kabyanga is defending his seat on the NRM ticket. To the voters, he is viewed as a liberal NRM and thus gives him the opportunity to dig into the opposition vote in Kasese says Baluku Johnson of KIU.
However Kabakwa James who is running on the FDC ticket says Kabyanga has been mayor of Kasese because of the FDC support and thus he is determined this time round to mobilize all FDC cadres to rally behind him so that they can defeat Kabyanga. Others in the race are Paul Mudaki Asaba and Omar Musyenene of JEEMA.
In Mpondwe Lhubirigha Town Council Kafupi Makoti Ramadhan defeated the incumbent Mukirania George to scoop the NRM ticket is facing FDC’s Masereka Mapozi Selevester an accountant by training. According to Baluku Julius Syakengwa a teacher at Bwera S S a candidate who will have better policies on improving health services, garbage collection, draining system will most likely carry the day since these are the major challenges of the area.
Nzoghu William is defending his seat on the FDC ticket and is facing great challenge from NRM’s Mike Mbakania and (rtd) Major Elly Magwara of the Go Forward Movement.
NRM’s Kafuda Boaz is defending his seat against FDC’s Mbaju Katika. This race is most likely going to take a tribal tone pitying the Basongora pastoralists against the Bakonzo farmers says Bwambale Onesmus
This constituency has a history of fielding a high number of contestants in every election and this time round they have not disappointed. Herold Tonny Muhindo trounced the incumbent Bihande Yokasi in the FDC primaries but is facing NRM’s Businge Polisi who many think may clinch the seat.
Others in the race who equally have the chance to win are Kithende Kalibogha on the Go Forward ticket that once represented the constituency, Kahungu Philly, Kalemba Moses, Syaipuma Robert.
NRM strongman and defense minister Dr Crispus Kiyonga is facing his nephew Capson Sausi an independent who has worked with many national and international NGOs and who happens to have serviced in the same guild government with NRM deputy secretary general Richard Todwong at Makerere University in the late nineties.
Dr Kiyonga is also facing FDC’s Godfrey Katusabe a don at Makerere University who is credited for having taught a good number of students at Bwera S S. According to Ngimba Josephat a teacher at Karambi SS all the three candidates are strong and that it’s too early to determine who will make it in the end.
The author is a political analyst with The Sunrise and can be reached on 0701734677 firstname.lastname@example.org