Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) has said that it will not leave the Inter-party Organisation for Dialogue (IPOD) and its ready to take it leadership term willingly.
IPOD has five-member parties and according to the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), each party has a chance to lead other four members. Leadership rotates every after six months.
The five members include; National Resistance Movement (NRM), Democratic Party (DP), Uganda People’s Congress (UPC), FDC and Justice Forum (Jeema).
On September 25th this year the term of office for the DP expired, giving FDC a chance to lead, therefore currently both the chair of the IPOD Summit and IPOD Council have to come from the country’s main opposition party.
Over the past months, rumors have been making rounds that FDC was planning to pull out of the dialogue accusing President Yoweri Museveni of overshadowing the importance of IPOD in the country.
However, while addressing journalists on Monday, FDC spokesperson Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda revealed that they are not planning to leave IPOD and that they are in the process of talking over the helm.
“I would like to confirm to the public that FDC rejects any insinuation made by some of our colleagues in the IPOD that we are reluctant to take up the leadership of this voluntary organisation upon expiry of the term of office of DP,” Ssemujju said.
He added that FDC is willing to lead IPOD however there are some proposals which must be put into consideration if the dialogue is to benefit all the party members.
“The FDC Secretary General Hon. Nandala Mafabi will in consultation with the IPOD Summit Chair Hon. Eng. Patrick Amuriat present proposals on the issues the FDC wants IPOD to consider in the next six months of our leadership. We are aware of some manoeuvre by some IPOD colleagues to illegally handover leadership to another party. They want to skip FDC because it refused to sit on the same table with the dictator Yoweri Museveni. The FDC would like to remind the country and our colleagues in IPOD that this organization was formed to strengthen multiparty in Uganda and a culture of democracy.”
In May 2019, the outgoing IPOD chair also DP President Nobert Mao and President Museveni attacked FDC for snubbing the dialogue activities having refused to take part in the summit for second consecutive time.
Mao urged FDC leaders to change their mindsets if Uganda is to achieve the political democracy they yearn for.
“We call upon our colleagues who have consistently denounced IPOD Summit meetings simply because they feel that sitting in a meeting with President Museveni waters down their image as an opposition party to change their attitude,” Mao said.
On the other hand, Museveni said, “We invite FDC but I do not know why they don’t come but that’s up to them.”
Core role of IPOD in Uganda:
Hosted and facilitated by NIMD, IPOD was set up in 2010 to bring together leaders of all political shades in the country to foster a strong and vibrant multiparty democracy in Uganda based on peaceful co-existence of all citizens to work harmoniously.
The platform brings together all of Uganda’s parliamentary political parties. As equal members of the platform, these parties all have an equal voice.
The parties are also represented in the IPOD council, the platform’s main guiding body. As such they jointly decide on the way forward for the organization.
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