By John Ogulei
Bickering has taken center stage in the race for Soroti District Woman Member of Parliament.
With less than 36 days to Election date, Political bickering between those aspiring for seat has seen candidates and their supporters faulting each other for not having people centred manifestos.
Three candidates are jostling for the position currently held by Angeline Osegge who is contesting as an independent having been thrown out of FDC. Others are NRM’s Amigo Jessica Leah and FDC’s Anne Adeke Ebaju.
Specifically, the latest rivalry has been between FDC’s Adeke and incumbent Osegge.
For instance, the two have locked horns on over who has the mandate to construct the Gweri Health Centre III kitchen.
According to our sources in Gweri, trouble started after Ms Adeke, together with her team, delivered building materials at the health facility and immediately commenced work.
This however, prompted Osegge to storm the facility demanding explanation as to why the agreement signed between her and the health centre, together with the Gweri Sub-county leadership had been revised in favour of Ms Adeke.
Mr Kokas Justine Okwii, an admirer of Adeke in Gweri Sub-county, however defended Adeke claiming that they kept bringing the matter before the incumbent MP since 2011, but her willingness to help was not visible.
A section of voters also inclined to FDC’s Adeke accuse the incumbent for not being a voter in Soroti district and now wants to use her reelection to benefit her own interest.
According to information from the Electoral Commission seen by this reporter, Osegge is a resident of Cell E, Senior Quarters Ward in Soroti City Western Division and will be voting at Soroti Sports ground polling station.
Hellen Ariokot of Abilangit Village in Arapai Sub County wonders why Osegge is interesting herself to run for Soroti District Woman MP instead of Soroti City where she is a registered voter.
“Why is she interested in the District yet she is not a voter here? I think she must be looking for avenues to win an election and she disappears because she will have no pain for us. I am worried that she might forget us,” Ariokot told this reporter.
She argues that, Osegge should have either stood as an MP Soroti City or left the ground for NRM’s Amigo Jessica Leah or FDC’s Ann Adeke Ebaju.
Deborah Abego, also expressed her worry that, Osegge’s interests are far from leading the people of Soroti.
“You can’t imagine we have been charged a minimum of 20,000/= for buying gomasis. This simply means if she cannot offer them for free, then even when she wins she will dump us,” said Abego.
Nathan Oriama, a voter in Agirigiroi parish in Arapai Sub County also wonders why Osegge would run in Soroti District yet she cannot even vote for herself.
“Osegge to me is here not to represent us. Am imagining Soroti being led by a person who is not a registered voter within our locality. I think she is here to fight NRM’s Amigo or FDC’s Adeke,” he added.
Recently, Both NRM’s Amigo and FDC’s Adeke during parallel interviews with this reporter also faulted Independent Osegge for not working closely with the voters during her two tenures in Parliament.
The bickering has however gone deeper with FDC’s Adeke filing a case of defamation against John Enomu, the Soroti City West Mayoral candidate and others for allegedly defaming and depriving her of her privacy.
Speaking to this reporter on Saturday 5th December, Adeke said that Enomu told mourners recently that she is married to a Kenyan man and that once elected would run away and only serve the interests of her Kenyan man.
She now claims the detractors in Soroti are using that to fight her politically.
It must be understood that when Soroti was elevated into a city most politicians who had plans to contest under Soroti District were affected with the creation of two other constituencies.