DP MPs embark on countrywide exercise to rejuvenate party

A section of DP leaders and members from Busoga in a group photo after the meeting on Thursday, April 11, 2024 (Photos/Isabirye Simon Peter)

Iganga, (UG):- A section of Members of Parliament from the Democratic Party (DP) have embarked on a countrywide exercise of rejuvenating the party to ensure that they attract new members and change the entire party leadership as well as attract people who will contest on DP ticket at various political levels across the country in the forthcoming 2026 general elections.

Led by the Member of Parliament for Buikwe South in Buikwe district Hon. Dr. Michael Lulume Bayiga and Mityana South Member of Parliament in Mityana district Hon. Richard Lumu Kizito, the staunch DP members say the rejuvenation is also aimed at attaining the party’s lost glory by having leadership that will stand on the party foundation principles.

This was revealed on Thursday, April 11, as the MPs under the DP parliamentary caucus met different party leaders in Busoga sub-region at Fort Lugard Hotel in Iganga District where the members raised a number of concerns which need to be worked on for the country’s oldest political party to flourish again.

The development comes at a time when the party president general Hon. Nobert Mao was appointed as a minister in the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) of President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni while the secretary general Hon. Gerald Siranda happens to be dining with the NRM, something the DP members said has caused the public to think that the party was sold to the ruling government which they refuted and related it to individual decisions.

“Our party has been sleeping and it has been in a state of confusion since Hon Mao crossed to NRM, so we as the parliamentary caucus are making an effort to bring back the party to the attention of Ugandans that the party is national, live and kicking. We are delighted to see that all districts in Busoga have been represented in this meeting,” Dr Bayiga said.

Hon Dr. Lulume Bayiga speaking to DP leaders in Busoga in a meeting on Thursday

He added that they have also embarked on the exercise of dully registering new members in their party registers which will proceed up to the end of this month and this is intended to lay a foundation for structure formation, and address the weakness of the party after knowing their members and where they are situated.

“We have addressed the concerns of our members and they are going to undertake the process that we have directed them to do. We admit that there were strategic mistakes in the leadership of the party and this forced many of our great leaders to vacate the party but we are realizing that it is necessary now to clean up our house and enable them to come back to an attractive house where they can offer leadership to this country better than where they had taken refuge,” Dr. Bayiga added.

However, Hon. Lumu urged party leaders to be determined in building their party and move with it while ensuring that they uphold the principles and ideals of the party without looking back. He pledged their commitment in realigning the party and said that the party will survive the entire storm.

“The people here are telling us that we need to realign the party and we are determined to do that. We are going around the country and meeting those people, reassuring them of the party and the values and we are determined to be ready by the time we reach the national delegates conference. Everyone has been talking about every bad thing about the DP but I want to assure people that DP will never die, it will survive all storms,” Hon. Lumu said.

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Hon Lumu said the meeting reflected the commitment by DP members to go down and look for others who will be registered and said their major aim is to take leadership of the country. Lumu commended the people in Busoga for their effort towards rejuvenating the party, however, he asked the president general of DP Hon Mao to relinquish power after causing damage to the party.

“We gave him the message long ago, I wrote and told him in a text that for the good of the party and actually I am still asking him to relinquish the power for the good of the party and nothing will happen to him. Actually if tomorrow he says is not contesting, he will come out to be the greatest leader of this party, after messing it up and he comes to admit and afterwards, the party will continue with fresh blood,” Hon. Lumu advised.

Dr. Lulume Bayiga and Hon Richard Lumu while speaking to the press after the meeting

Some of the party leaders who attended the meeting said he was pleased to meet with members of parliament from DP about rejuvenating the party, something he said would bridge the leadership vacuum in the party to ensure the smooth operation of the party.

“The meeting we had today is geared to revive the party in this sub-region. As we see now, the affairs of the party are so discouraging because it seems to have a leadership vacuum and we have started measures to see that the party regains its glory, first by installing new leaders, new strategies and new plans for the party,” Mr Phillip Jeremiah Muwanguzi, the DP chairperson Mayuge district and former DEC member of the UYD for Busoga sub-region said.

The DP chairperson for Iganga Municipality, Mr. Mulondo Owen and the DP Women League Chairperson in Iganga, Ms. Mirembe Suzan say they have hope in the party even though most of their former top leaders have been conniving with the ruling NRM government to destabilize it.

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They pledged to revive the political party by electing structures from villages to the national level but with emphasis on adherent members, not the ones who are money-minded.

Ms. Walusimbi Enid, the DP district woman leader in Jinja district called upon all women in the country to join her in the political battle to revive the glory of the Democratic Party by welcoming new members who will have the spirit of the party.

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