FDC Grassroot Polls Kick-start in Gulu amidst controversies.

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In short
The opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party has rolled out its grassroots elections in Gulu district, despite protests from some FDC councilors over disunity in the party and limited books for registration.

The opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party has rolled out its grassroots elections in Gulu district, despite protests from some FDC councilors over disunity in the party and limited books for registration.

The Elections will begin from the village, parish, sub-county, county up to district levels and will take four days starting Thursday. Each will elect 11 executive committee members.

However Betty Aol Ochan, the vice chairperson FDC in Gulu, the secretariat did not send enough books for registration and money for the people registration and this is dragging the process.

She says that most of the registration items were given to sub counties, leaving villages with a limited number. Aol says the entire exercise of registering needed over 350 books but a place like Gulu Municipality has not a single registration book. She says the municipality needs 100 registration books.

The enrollment officers are also yet to get facilitation. According to Aol, each official is supposed to get 25,000 Shillings for the exercise through mobile money but they are yet to receive the money.
The Party is also still faced with a conflict between five councilors and the FDC chairperson Martin Ojara Mapenduzi.

Two weeks ago, five councilors were accused by the FDC chairperson Martin Ojara Mapenduzi of meeting President Museveni and also plotting to join the NRM party. The councilors have petitioned the FDC party president General Mugisha Muntu to intervene and reconcile FDC in Gulu but also halt the grassroots elections saying it will not be free and fair.

However, they are yet to hear from Muntu.

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Patrick Komakech, the FDC spokesperson in Gulu  one of the FDC councilors in conflict with the chairman, they have been blocked from attending party activities by the chairperson Mapenduzi, he says that FDC should handle the matter as a party.
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About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.