Presidential candidate Joseph Mabirizi says he is in advanced stages of holding a mock election scheduled for February 12, 2016 before the general polls on February 18.
Mabirizi told press on Monday that his mock elections would help rate the candidates’ performance in anticipation of the final results which will be declared by the official independent electoral commission.
“The purpose of this notice is to inform you that we are organising a mock election which will be held on 12th February before the official national exercise.”
He said the informal exercise will take place in specific but randomly selected areas of Kampala, Masaka, Mbale, Jinja, Mbarara, Hoima, Arua and Gulu towns or villages.
The objectives of the mock elections, he said, is to provide realistic data for practical opinion polls before the official general elections.
“To reduced tension ahead of general elections noting that the practice of electioneering is meant to be a normal routine without tension.”
He said it should be free of coercion, free of use of money, free of teargas and bullets.
“Elections should not spell death from which most people try to run away.”
According to him, the mock elections will also give a clear picture of the rating of each candidate and guide them to make realistic decisions, to either work hard alone or make alliances.
“To avoid wasting the tax payers’ money through organising a re-run of elections, the data generated will guide stakeholders in making informed decisions, regarding elections, instead of basing on opinion polls, some of which are concocted using date generated from boardrooms.”
Mabirizi said after the mock exercise, the 6 trailing candidates will be encouraged to ally with either two of the strongest candidates in the race as it does not pay to become third or fourth in the race.
“The mock exercise will also promote the use of Biometric voter verification gadgets if they are provided,” he said.
Mabirizi says he is notifying the electoral commission, chief of police and civil society on the matter.
However, EC spokesperson, Jotham Taremwa, says they have not received Mabirizi’s letter on the matter and are waiting for it urgently.
“We are waiting for his letter and will surely respond,” Taremwa said.
“We advise him to wait for our response because I think he is not allowed to do that,” Taremwa added.