Hon. Ssemujju Nganda, Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) spokesperson and Kira Municipality legislator, has accused the NRM Electoral Commission boss, Dr. Tanga Odoi, of playing a pivotal role in the various illegalities that happened during the Soroti East City by-election.
Ssemujju claimed that Tanga Odoi, together with Prime Minister Nabbanja, ordered the arrest of FDC members, including party president Patrick Amuriat and their agents.
“FDC agents who were arrested before the election started were brought back by Tanga Odoi in the evening to sign the declaration forms at gunpoint. He was shouting, “I am not begging you. You must sign,” said Ssemujju while appearing on NBS TV this morning.
He also accused Nabbanja of distributing money to hundreds of people at Lion’s Club in Soroti.
“The FDC President went to protest, and he was arrested but later released,” he said.
However, Dr. Tanga Odoi denied the accusations put against him by Ssemujju.
“I am positively surprised by what Hon. Ssemujju Nganda is saying because I was in Soroti myself. I am a man who says and keeps his word. My role in the Soroti by-election was vote protection,” said Tanga Odoi.
The Kira Municipality MP insisted, saying, “We were not the only witnesses to what happened in Soroti. The media witnessed it, and the people of Soroti also witnessed it. A professor at Makerere (Dr. Tanga Odoi) was seen stuffing ballot boxes. “
He further claimed that there was a polling station where voting was closed at lunchtime, and voting material was taken away.
In response, Odoi told Ssemujju that more defeats await the opposition in the upcoming by-elections.
“You are going to see more defeat because we have a General Secretary who is a strategist. Our strategy is one they don’t understand,” he said.
NRM’s Herbert Edmund Ariko was on Thursday declared the winner of the Soroti East Member of Parliament by-election.
According to the Soroti City Returning Officer, Christine Eyuu, Ariko garnered 9,407 votes against Moses Attan’s 8,771 votes. The Uganda Peoples’ Congress-UPC candidate, Pascal Amuriat got 115 votes.
The polls were characterized by violence and reports of ballot stuffing, especially at Omalera, Otatai, and Owolo polling stations.