We can achieve a peaceful and considerate elections in Uganda. This desired goal should be a priority for all peace loving Ugandans.
One of the important duty & obligation for Citizens: “The exercise and enjoyment of rights and freedoms is inseparable from the performance of duties and obligations; and, accordingly, it shall be the duty of every citizen— to register for electoral and other lawful purposes. Section XXIX, Article 17 (H) Uganda Constitution, 1995”
As Uganda counts down to the 2021 general elections, United Nations in Uganda, the National Initiative on Civic Education in Uganda, Ministry of ICT & National Guidance, and the Sustainable Development Goals secretariat, have joined hands to call for peaceful electoral processes that are free, fair and considerate for the better good of the country’s socio-economic development.
The electoral process started on November 1 2020 with candidates launching of their campaign schedules. Thereafter, candidates have been traversing the country offering themselves and pledging to the people of Uganda in seeking for their votes as their next leaders.
The election cycle that takes place once every five years, involves candidates seeking for leadership positions at different levels from local council up to the top most seat in the country there’s – the presidency.
However, in some instances, the 2021 journey to the polls hasn’t been a smooth one with recorded cases of violence, intimidation and misinformation and other manipulation tactics.
Therefore, under the #Peace1stUganda campaign, we want to ensure that all citizens have equal right of access to information, guaranteed under the Constitution of Uganda, and to gain knowledge to the electoral process so as to make an informed and unbiased decision when choosing their leader(s)
Uganda constitution, 1995; Article 59. Right to vote.
(1) Every citizen of Uganda of eighteen years of age or above has a right to vote.
(2) It is the duty of every citizen of Uganda of eighteen years of age or above to register as a voter for public elections and referenda.
(3) The State shall take all necessary steps to ensure that all citizens qualified to vote register and exercise their right to vote.
(4) Parliament shall make laws to provide for the facilitation of citizens with disabilities to register and vote
The right to free speech, is guaranteed under the constitutionarticle 29, (1 A).
This demands that throughout the course of the campaign, citizens must respect each other’s opinion on who they want to vote for.
In the course of political campaigns, and towards election time it is the duty of every citizen, to discourage, and fight against voter intimidation, domestic violence, harassment and targeted violence, spread of fake news and propaganda.
Under article 31 (1) of Uganda’s constitution, guarantees that “Women shall be accorded full and equal dignity of the person with men”. Therefore in the course of the 2021 electoral cycle, United Nations in Uganda, the National Initiative on Civic Education in Uganda, Ministry of ICT & National Guidance, and the Sustainable Development Goals secretariat supports women participation in the election cycle.
Candidates are urged to use formal language, use positive narratives in sharing their messages during campaigns, and to deviate from use of hate speech and tribal narratives – patriotism should be the end goal before, during and even after the elections.