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Ground rules for elections set by Uganda's Electoral Commission

Ground rules for elections set by Uganda's Electoral Commission


The electoral commission in Uganda is in the process of delivering electoral materials to some 28,010 polling stations across the country.

The delivery comes ahead of presidential elections on on Thursday February 18.

15 million citizens are voting, with many doing so for the first time.

The EC had announced on Tuesday that there will not be any phones or gadgets allowed within the polling stations, and that no photography will be permitted.

The chairman however says one can zoom in on their cameras twenty meters away.

“When you are in the formation shut off your mobile phone or put in silent mode to proceed, because what has brought you to the polling station is to vote. As soon as you enter don’t be seen to be holding your pocket especially if you have left your phone vibrating, you may be tempted, so no photographs inside the polling stations. What we care about is the secrecy of the voter,” Dr. Badru Kiggundu, Chairman, Uganda Electoral Commission.

There have been reports of intimidation in the campaigns that ended on Tuesday.

Security forces are already on ground to ensure a peaceful process.

“And we are saying security forces will not hesitate to enforce law and order and whoever tries violence, they will meet the full force of the law. This is our country, we want people to elect in a peaceful environment and this is what we are saying. And, I am hoping that Ugandans will be vigilant and look out for all those characters who want to cause violence so that we can stop them and keep our country peaceful”.

In the 2011 elections, there was a voter turnout of 59.29 percent; eight million people took part in the democratic process.

Despite tensions, the message everyone is preaching is that of peace and encouragement for young people to vote.

Eight candidates are running for the highest office of the country.

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