IEC boss Eng Badru Kiggundu

The second batch of ballot papers is arriving later today, the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) has announced, adding that the printing of the entire package of ballot papers is on course.

According to the IEC, today’s consignment of 361 pallets contains ballot papers for elections of District Chairpersons, District Directly-elected Councillors and Sub County Women Councillors.

The ballot papers for the 2016 general elections were printed in four countries namely: South Africa, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates (Dubai) and in Uganda, and on January 28 the IEC received the first consignment of 15, 987, 800 ballot papers for the Presidential and Parliamentary Elections, which were printed in South Africa by Pearl Media company.

‘The Electoral Commission invites accredited observers, including the media, to witness the receiving of ballot papers at the airport and the other handling stages,’ reads part of a statement issued by the Commission chairman Eng Badru Kiggundu.

Giving an update on the progress of the elections, the IEC boss reiterated the Commission’s position of having a peaceful election.
‘As the campaign period enters into the final days, the Electoral Commission calls on all stakeholders in the electoral process, and particularly the candidates, to promote peace and tolerance and to desist from using any language that may cause fear or create tension in the public,’ Mr Kiggundu said.

Meanwhile, the IEC also took the opportunity to dismiss recent rumours doing the rounds on social media, that the chartered Ethiopian Airlines plane carrying the ballot papers stopped over in Kigali and offloaded some ballot papers.

‘The Electoral Commission however, wishes to dismiss as utterly false, the reports by some sections of the media and particularly social media, which allege that the airplane carrying the ballot papers from South Africa, first made a detour to a neighbouring country, where some ballot papers were off loaded, before coming to Entebbe and delivering the rest of the consignment. This allegation is utterly baseless and false…’ Kiggundu wrote.

According to the IEC boss, the airway bill issued by the Ethiopian Airlines indicates the route followed by the airplane, with the airport of departure as OR Tambo International Airport, Johannesburg, South Africa, and the airport of destination as Entebbe International Airport, Uganda.

The IEC boss also peeked into the Biometric Voter Verification System (BVVS), and said demonstrations carried out at the different IEC district offices on January 30, were a success.