By Mable Nakibuuka
The Electoral Commission (E.C) has called upon all individuals, institutions and organisations that intend to act as Election Observers during the 2021 general election to submit their Expression Interest with the Commission for approval and accreditation.
This was revealed by the E.C chairperson Justice Simon Byabakama during a press conference held at the Commission’s headquarters in Kampala on Thursday September 17, 2020.
During the said presser, Justice Byabakama also revealed dates for nominations candidates for Local Government, which he said will be conducted from 21 Sept – 1 October 2020, while nominations for MP Elections will be held between 12-13 October 2020.
Meanwhile nomination of Presidential candidates is will be held between 2-3 November 2020.
“EC invites expressions of interest from individuals, registered national organisations and institutions, who wish to observe the said processes. Interested organisations, institutions and individuals should submit their applications to the Office of the Chairperson, Electoral Commission through the online application system accessible at http://ec.or.ug/accreditation in time to participate in the above activities,” Byabakama said.
He added that; “Invitations to international and regional bodies and organisations, will be channeled through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Please note that political parties and organisations may appoint agents to observe the electoral activities. Applicants shall provide evidence to prove governance is a key aspect of their activities, and to demonstrate a track record of credibility.”
He noted that organisations and institutions shall be required to prove their registration status with respective regulatory authorities is up to-date.
He explained that the observers will include international And regional bodies and organisations, civil society organisations, institutions &individuals.
The Chairperson also observed that the Commission shall provide all those accredited organisations with written clearance, relevant information and identification tags for the purpose of observing the various activities of the electoral process.
“Successful applicants shall be required to abide by the Laws of Uganda, and comply with election observer guidelines and Code of Conduct to be issued by EC,” Byabakama said, adding that; “They will further be required to comply with the Standard Operating Procedures against the spread of COVID-19.”
In his concluding remarks, Byabakama noted that;
“The Commission advises political parties and aspiring independent candidates to ensure that they follow the above programme and prepare to present their nomination forms in accordance with the guidelines issued for each elective position.
Candidates, their agents and supporters are urged to strictly follow the guidelines on public meetings as issued by the Ministry of Health and the Commission.
Finally, we call upon all Ugandans to work together to ensure safe participation in the elections.”
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