‘Refrain from campaigns’ – EC Byabakama warns politicians

The Electoral Commission (EC) is warning candidates aspiring for the 2021 elections against early
campaigns, saying they are disruptive to public order in the country.

“Political parties and organization are hereby advised to guide their members concerning such
internal party electoral calendar, including issuing clear preparation,” EC said.
The EC noted that some candidates are disguising as parties consulting electorates in preparation for
the 2021 elections to start early campaigns, which contravenes existing electoral laws, the
Presidential Elections Act 2005 in particular.

EC Chairman Simon Byabakama,


Some of the forms of early campaigns cited included aspirants organizing campaign meetings,
addressing rallies, putting up posters, distributing campaign materials and soliciting for votes.
“At the moment in the electoral calendar, there are no persons nominated as candidates for
presidential, parliamentary and local government council elections. All aspirants are therefore urged
to refrain from engaging in active campaigns for these elective positions,” reads the EC statement
signed by its chairperson, Simon Byabakama.
He noted that Section 3 of the Presidential Elections Act 2005 provides for aspirants to consult in
preparation for nominations but they should be distinguished from campaigns which take the form of
distributing materials, campaigns, holding rallies and meetings and canvassing / soliciting for votes.
“Ordinarily consultation is defined to mean exchange of views in an attempt to reach a decision.
Accordingly the identified venue, mode and manner of the consultative meeting ought to facilitate
the exchange of views between the aspirant and those being consulted,” the statement read.
He agrees consultative meetings and campaigns can however take place internally when political
parties wish to choose the party flag bearers for various elective positions.
“Political parties and organization are hereby advised to guide their members concerning such
internal party electoral calendar, including issuing clear preparation,” EC said.
In the same statement, Byabakama banned any form of processions on public roads, saying they are
disruptive to public order.
According the electoral road map released in December, the presidential, parliamentary and local
council election will be held in 2021.
Over sh861b will be spent to organize the 2021 general elections. In the 2016, sh419 b was spent to
organize the elections.

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