News and Views
Ugandans Want Janet to replace M7- New Survey
By John V Sserwaniko: Source: Red Pepper
A new survey report by Research World International (RWI) Ltd has shown that there is moresupport among Ugandans for First Lady Janet Museveni to replace Yoweri Museveniin 2016 than for any other NRM politician.
The survey, whose findings werereleased yesterday at Hotel Africana in Kampala, shows that Janet is morefavored and she is ahead of other NRM leaders perceived to be desiring toreplace Museveni should he bow out in 2016.
In the survey, 1300 adult Ugandanswere among other things asked who they prefer to become next president fromwithin in NRM in case Museveni quit.
They were prompted on Rebecca Kadaga,Amama Mbabazi and Gilbert Bukenya. The trio’s ambition to replace Museveni hasbeen more conscipicuous than any other person’s. 13.8% said they would vote for Janet Museveni; 13% Gilbert Bukenya; 11.5% for Kadaga and 8% for Mbabazi.
The report notes that whereas Janet beats Kadaga within NRM circles; the Kamuli woman MP beats all of them generally when non NRM respondents are included.
The report shows the way she has handled the Karamoja docket and her otherphilanthropic activities has given the Ruhama County MP visibility and popularity.
It notes her plunging into electoral politics cultivated momentum for Janet asa potential future president. Kadaga’s support was highest in 35-44 year olds.
It shows when asked openly who among the women they would vote for president,28% respondents mentioned Kadaga’s name saying they had liked the way she revived independence and credibility of parliament.
The report also shows that 2.5% favored Nandala to replace Besigye and become next president against Mugisha Muntu’s1.3%. That 22.5% (18% of the villagers) of the respondents favored Besigye to run again and become president in case Museveni doesn’t stand in 2016.
Mao had6.3%; Otunnu 3%; Beti Kamya 0.1%; Nandala 2.5% and Muntu 1.3%. 55.6% of the respondents felt Museveni isn’t doing a good job and preferred that he quits in2016. Of the 55.6%, 44% are in rural areas, Museveni’s traditional power base.
Of the 55.6% indicting Museveni, 41% are low income earners struggling to earnShs2,500 ($1) per day. 56.8% don’t think Museveni will ever leave power voluntarily and 30% of these are rural area dwellers. 50% said that in his fourth term, Museveni isn’t meeting their expectations.
Majority of these are in rural areas, the survey claimed. The report also shows that 39% of the eligible voters who didn’t vote in February 2011 failed because of constraints created by the EC such as their names missing on the register.
0.1% were stopped by their spouses and 1.6% were sickon that day. 50.9% of the respondents (majority of them villagers) said they didn’t feel threatened to vote against ruling party candidates.
In other words they said they can’t vote a candidate simply because the RDC has threatened them. The report also shows that NRM is still the most popular party in Uganda despite droppings in its ratings.
Strangely, the same report says NRM leader Museveni has become very unpopularto the extent that the party is better off without him than keeping him at the helm.
NRM was strongest in Central region and its support amongst the 1300 sampled respondents averages at 54% in other regions of Uganda. The opposition didn’t beat NRM in any region.
Nevertheless, the report notes that FDC grew its strength by three percentage points from the 26% Besigye got in 2011 elections. The report also established Museveni’s support has declined amongst his hitherto diehard supporters.
It adds there are those Ugandans who passionately hate Museveni; have never voted for him and will never vote for him. It also notes that even those abandoning NRM because of Museveni’s long stay aren’t joining opposition parties because there isn’t sufficient attraction.
Thereport speculates, without claiming any authority, that Museveni/NRM’s support could have declined because of the bad economic times in the election after math and that the walk to work could have boosted FDC with the three percentage pointsto 29%.
Both NRM and FDC representativesat the event dismissed the report as inaccurate. NRM was represented by indomitableFred Bamwine and FDC by Salaam Musumba who said the report was reflective ofthe fact that Ugandans move slowly when making political decisions.
She said this is unfortunate as FDC would like to see something different. Angelo Izama,one of the authors of the report, was asked to tell what would be the political game changer for Uganda the way the Tunisian economic hardships bred the Arab Spring and he said it will have to be an event such as the death of one of thevery prominent actors in the country whose supporters would react spontaneously.
RWI is headed by Gawaya Tegulle and Dr. Patrick Wakidda who said he wasn’t surprisedat the findings because “the fact that only 58% of eligible voters cast ballotsin February 2011 means the NRM is ruling with only 35% mandate and FDC scoredjust 16%.”