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  • PWDs demand for transport to voting venues
  • EC says it has no money

    • Participants at the Western Regional Civic education Workshop

Persons with disability (PWDs) have expressed concern over what they call the likely disenfranchisement of the rights after electoral commission indicating that it has no budget to transport them to and fro voting venues.

“We fear our capacity to make independent choices during the coming elections is likely to be affected by the fact that Electoral Commission has no resources to transport us to voting venues,” a participant said during the Western Uganda Regional Civic Education Workshop held on Oct 13, 2015 in Hoima district.  

The workshop was organised by National Union of disabled Persons of Uganda (NUDIPU), with support from Open Society Initiative of East Africa (OSIEA).

While responding to concerns raised by participants, Mr Stuart Tamale, the Head Special Interest Groups, field operations department, Uganda Electoral Commission, said the EC is aware of the PWDs predicament but that it has no plans to address the matter.

He said the EC had earlier planned to finance the transporting of PWDs to the voting venues, unfortunately government refused to fund the proposal.

“We all know that we do not make money. We are simply spenders of what is allocated to us. We had submitted the proposal in our budget but it was scraped off by government,” he said.

PWDs said the scenario places them at a risk of being manipulated by wealthy candidates who often take advantage of their poverty by providing transport in return for votes.

At least over 50 representatives from all districts in western Uganda gathered at Nexus Hotel, Hoima to dialogue on the election process.

NUDIPU intends to hold four public awareness workshops in order to increase effective participation of persons with disabilities during the upcoming 2016 general elections.  

The event is part of the several other strategies being used to raise awareness regarding PWDs participation. Additionally, media campaign and training of PWDs leaders will be conducted.  

Tamale, however, urged PWDs to participate in big numbers as they vie for elective positions at all levels.


© 2013 National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda, All right reserved