Most Ugandans would hold bush war heroes aka NRM historicals with great fear and regard but the NRM Electoral Commission chairman, Tanga Odoi.
While giving an update of the candidates that have picked nominations from the NRM headquarters on August 6, 2015, Tanga told the historicals that they may as well go and hang themselves.
“No candidate is a super candidate over the other candidates. No candidate is beyond the other,” Odoi made his point clear from the start.
Giving an example of NRM entrepreneurs League chairperson, tycoon Hassan Bassajjabala, Tanga dismissed reports that he had denied him forms.
“Basajjabala has never come to Plot 10 to pick forms and I denied him the forms”.
In what looked like a swipe at Mawokota North MP, Amelia Kyambadde, Tanga said: “I don’t have time for people fighting for constituencies.”
Amelia recently clashed with Tanga when she attempted to block a one Grace Kansiime from picking forms to contest against her.
“No amounts of threats from any aspirant will make me to bend the law,” Odoi made himself clear.
He said the constitution gives him what to do and “that’s what we are doing”.
“If you are an NRM historical and you think you can intimidate or control people, go and hang,” Tanga suggested.
He said, for example, the “father of historicals” who doubles as the country’s president and chairman of the NRM party has confirmed that he will return his forms himself, which he picked personally or would have missed out, how about others?
“In NRM we are all equal whether you joined in 1986 or today,” he continued, suggesting that instead of using intimidation, the members should act like Museveni who follows party rules and regulations.
Tanga’s remarks come at a time of a power struggle between ageing politicians (NRM historicals) and an ambitious youth who want to take power from them.
The battle between Maj Gen Matayo Kyaligonza, the NRM vice-chairman for Western Uganda, and Odrek Rwabwogo, the president’s son-in-law, is still making rounds in debates.
Meanwhile, Odoi further denied that NRM was using public funds to run their business saying they had collected Shs 4.1 billion from plot 10 and more money is being collected to fund party activities.
For now, the return of the nomination papers closes today, Thursday August 20, at 6pm and President Museveni is expected to return his today without fail.
“If the President is law abiding, which I think he is, he will surely come here to return the nomination papers,” Tanga Odoi said.
To the contrary, NRM secretary general, Justine Kasule Lumumba, has warned Odoi’s EC staff to desist from abusing and barking at party members.
Equally so, some NRM district chairpersons want the party secretariat to reign in on the party electoral chief Tanga over alleged harassment.