Napak youth, elders vow not to vote for NRM

By Steven Ariong

Karamoja. The Napak-Katakwi border conflict has taken a new twist with a group of youth and elders in Karamoja Sub-region now vowing not to support the National Resistance Movement (NRM) candidates in the 2021 elections if President Museveni fails to resolve the conflict.

Speaking during a meeting called on Tuesday by the Napak Youth Umbrella, a youth organisation that highlights the plight of youtht in Iriir Sub-county, Napak District, the youth accused President Museveni, the NRM party leader, of paying less attention to the border conflicts between Teso and Karamoja that has lasted for years.
The youth also warned that they will mobilise support for the Opposition against the ruling NRM party candidates because government has paid a deaf ear to their plight.
“NRM has been getting a block vote in Karamoja over the years but we want to assure the party leadership that come 2021, we will pay back because we can’t continue being marginalised like this,” Mr Samuel Akudo, one of the youth, said.

Mr John Baptist Lorot, another youth, said they have been making mistakes by supporting NRM leaders. He accused them of aiding land grabbing in the region.
“In the next elections, we want to make some changes. The government removed guns from us promising to protect us with our properties but the same government has left people to come and destabilise us,” he said.

All the elected leaders in the eight districts of Karamoja sub-region belong to the NRM party. The locals say this has left them helpless, since their leaders cannot defend them.
Mr Jimmy Tebanyang, the NRM chairperson of Napak District, said the border demarcation between Napak and Katakwi has disappointed everyone in Karamoja, adding that it will be very hard to mobilise people to vote for the party candidates.

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