IEC officials and other stakeholders inspect the ballot papers at the airport

The first consignment of ballot papers to be used for the 2016 presidential elections have today arrived in the country, aboard an Ethiopian Airlines plane.

About 16 million ballot papers weighing 67 tonnes for the presidential and parliamentary elections were printed in by a South African firm, Pearl Media, and arrived at about 2pm.

At Entebbe International Airport to receive the ballot papers was Independent Electoral Commission boss Eng Badru Kiggundu and representatives of different political parties, civil rights organisations and international observers.

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“The beginning of the road is coming to a climax. As long as the level of suspicion remains, it will still be hard to print our own but we are privileged and happy,” Kiggundu said adding that distribution of the ballot papers begins in the next two weeks.

Other ballot papers for lower rung local council elections are being printed in the United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates (Dubai) and in Uganda.

“So far so good. Wen you are facing a military government, it has a lot of games but we must build confidence in our people that we can guard the votes,” said the Forum for Democratic Change representative at the function.

Uganda goes to the polls on February 18, beginning with the presidential and parliamentary elections, after which other lower rung local council elections will ensue up to March 10.