Mao thought he could eat his cake and have it

So the Democratic Party President Norbert Mao missed nomination to stand as Member of Parliament for Gulu Municipality just because of his defiance to critical national obligations. See Daily Monitor December 3, “Otafiire fails to block rival, Mao misses out”.

Mao was denied nomination simply because he did not bother to register for the National Identity Card and did not turn up for the voter register update.

The process of registering Ugandans for the Identity Card commenced on the April 14, 2014 and ended on January 11, 2015. For all this time Mao in his wisdom chose not to spare some time to be registered.

Instead, Mao and fellow Opposition politicians led by Kizza Besigye decampaigned the ID project fronting all excuses but not limited to the argument that it was a Museveni agenda to rig the 2016 general election. Of course they did not succeed as Ugandans came out in large numbers to register.

In his defence when journalists asked him why he had not been nominated, Mao said when the registration process was going on he was sick and bedridden.

Granted, Mao was sick for sometime but the registration process for the National Identity Card went on for more than a year. Besides, there was updating of the registers by the electoral commission between May and July 2015 but still he chose not to bother himself.

The Electoral Commission updated their registers on all parishes across the country from the April 7 to May 11 running aerts in both print and electronic media calling on people to update their status.

Certainly we all know that Mao was not on a hospital bed for all this time. In fact, Mao was busy campaigning to become DP president which he won on July 27.

However, the most ridiculous statement was when Mao alleged that his failure to be nominated was due to the ruling party’s machinations to deny him a chance to represent his people simply because he is in Opposition. But this is not his first time to be in Parliament. He has been there before and it was business as usual.

Besides, did NRM or President Museveni for that matter stop him from being registered either for the National Identity Card or updating his status with the Electoral Commission? That is pure escapism on Mao’s part and no sensible Ugandan can believe him with such excuses. An apology to his supporters for being insolent to legitimate government processes would be very ideal.

For a person who once vied for the highest office in the land to be this insolent puts a huge minus on his political career.

Leaders and especially of his generation must exhibit high levels of discipline since they are role models to many people.

Mao will not be the first to pay for the defiance of simple but critical due processes of government. Ken Lukyamuzi, Member of Parliament for Rubaga South missed out in the 8th Parliament simply because he defied an IGG request for him to declare his assets.

Lukyamuzi ranted to all media and evoked similar arguments like those Mao is putting forward that the ruling government wanted him out because of his oppositionist views. However, all this fell on deaf ears. Then IGG Justice Faith Mwondha didn’t budge and Lukyamuzi paid the ultimate price.

Much as Mr Mao is a brilliant lawyer, he must work on his attitude and behavioral competencies. These two competencies tend to fail most people especially those who are in high political offices. Whichever dimension this hiccup might take, Mr Mao and others who think like him should learn a big lesson.

Finally, let Mr Mao eat humble pie and accept his fate. It is not an offense to make a mistake, but it is a grievous mistake to insist on a mistake.

We all make mistakes but we must learn to own up and probably offer a legitimate apology. Mao, you can’t wriggle out of this.



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