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Maureen Kyalya joins Conservative Party

Maureen Kyalya

Former presidential candidate Maureen Walube Kyalya has joined the Conservative Party (CP) in a move she says is aimed at uplifting the poor.
 
Kyalya was one of the eight candidates in the controversial 2016  presidential elections won in which President Museveni was declared winner with with 60.75%.
 
After the polls, Kyalya went back to UK where she had worked as a social worker before joining politics. Kyalya now says that she needs to work within a party that has an objective of promoting democracy just like how Conservative Party advocates.
 
She adds that she wants to empower women and protect their property especially land which they have lost because of the current government that does not prioritise protection of women’s rights.
 
Kyalya, 42, adds that in order for her and CP to realise this objective, they have embarked on mobilisation of the masses right from the grassroots such that by the time the next elections are due, the party will have established itself right from the village level.
 
She says that all the other political contestants cannot redeem the country because they all have a background of National Resistance Movement (NRM).
 
Four of the eight candidates in the last elections all had roots in the ruling party. FDC party leader, Dr Kizza Besigye, who has been Museveni’s strongest opponent for the last 15 years, worked with the president during the bush war that brought NRM to power in 1986. He later served as state minister for internal affairs and political commissar.
 
Amama Mbabazi, another candidate was until October 2015 a prime minister in the Museveni government, having risen through the party and government hierarchy in a career that spans 40 years.
 
Just like Besigye, Benon Biraaro was in the bush war with Museveni before going on to serve in the army until his retirement in September 2013 as a Major-General.
 
Kyalya now says the government is forcefully taking people’s land to impoverish Ugandans. Kyalya said this on Thursday on the sidelines of an orientation workshop for Mbale district leaders.
 
“Am joining Conservative Party, a party that puts Uganda first before anybody else. It is the only party that says; do not sell off Uganda’s forests, do not sell of Uganda’s water bodies. It is the only party that cares about the rural poor. It is the only party that will protect people’s land. But we are not only conservatives, we are planning on how to we shall bring down the NRM government”, she said in Lusoga.
 
She however noted that the mess in government cannot be blamed only on President Museveni as a person but the whole system. She adds that she still has political ambitions of contesting for the presidency in the next elections.
 
“My political future is about changing the wrong direction that this country is taking. But my heart tells me that I have to be a president if am to change Uganda’s direction to prosperity for all. My heart tells me that, there are so many people out there even better than me at leadership but the NRM government is frustrating them. Whenever NRM identifies a strong leader, they buy you off or suffocate you into submission. But, for me, I want all the strong leaders in country to come together and we develop the country together. I will reach out to all the leaders so that we bring our brains together for a better Uganda. I will reach out to the families of former presidents including that of [Milton] Obote, Idi Amin, [Godfrey] Binaisa”, she said.

 In the 2011 general elections, Kyalya  contested for Jinja woman MP under the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) ticket but lost to Agnes Nabirye of NRM. In July 2012, she was named coordinator of the National Poverty Alleviation Programme in Busoga sub region, working under State House.

In a telephone interview, CP party president John Ken Lukyamuzi confirmed that Kyalya had expressed interest in joining the party.

He noted that as a party they are privileged because they are sure that Kyalya’s political background will put CP to another level.

“We believe in federalism a thought that Kyalya shares. We believe in empowering women …Kyalya believes in our political thinking. We are more than glad that she chose us among the many.”

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