Uganda People’s Congress [UPC] party president, Jimmy Akena, has denied receiving a lumpsum Shs1bn from President Yoweri Museveni to join forces with the ruling party.
Reports circulated over the weekend that Akena had been bought off with Shs1bn to deliver the Lango electorate to the incumbent.
Over the weekend, a UPC member of parliament, Ruth Aceng, was seen campaigning publically for Museveni in Arua town.
In Apac, over 300 UPC supporters defected to NRM and even posed for a photo with Museveni.
While addressing a news conference in Otuke district, Museveni told journalists that they are in talks with Akena who is the son of deceased president.
“On the issue of an alliance between UPC and NRM, it is true that we are talking in a responsible way,” Museveni said.
Edward Seganyi, speaking on behalf of Akena on Monday, told press in Kampala that the said bribe is a wild rumour meant to discredit the party.
In a statement, Akena confirmed that UPC is in talks whereby the core UPC minimum agenda that addresses key issues like health, education and agriculture will guide all engagements over the next 5 years.
“As UPC we firmly believe in the need for a peaceful transition and recognise that this could only be the last term for President Museveni and therefore any meaningful transition cannot exclude him and NRM from this transition.”
UPC from its founding as political Party, sought the preservation of national unity and integration which remains a key guiding principle, he said.
Akena explained that the discussions on these important national matters are not limited to NRM and that the Secretary General has held similar talks with the Go Forward Presidential candidate and team.
Contacts and preliminary talks have also been initiated with the FDC, the statement said.
All matters derived from the various approaches by the leading contenders, will at the appropriate time if necessary, be presented to the National Council.”
He said UPC cannot enter into an “Alliance” without the involvement of the Party organs.
“None of these discussions are about a merger but rather matters of national importance at this critical juncture in the political journey of Uganda.”
“As the UPC President, I am committed to abide by the National Council decision to build the party from the grassroots in preparation for the 2021 elections.”
He added: “I am similarly urging all UPC members to actively support and campaign for UPC candidates contesting for elective positions from LC I to Parliament in the 2016 elections.”