John Bosco Sserunkuma, the imprisoned National Unity Platform candidate in Nansana westward, Nansana Municipality has been voted to represent the area in Wakiso District Council. Sserunkuma obtained 2,343 votes while his main challenger Kibirige Kasule of the Democratic Party got only 480 votes.
Sserunkuma is one of the supporters of NUP president Robert Kyagulanyi who were arrested in Kalangala district in December last year during Kyagulanyi's campaign trail in the island district.
Although he was granted bail by the court, he was rearrested and later paraded before the Military Court in Makindye, where he, and several others were charged with illegal possession of military stores.
As the January 14 presidential election date drew closer, there were widespread allegations that Sserunkuma had died from Kitalya prisons. Prison authorities quickly dismissed the claims as false and baseless.
Stephen Mukalazi, one of Sserunkuma’s agents, notes that his arrest not only caused anxiety among his support base from the electoral area but also weakened the campaigning activities. Mukalazi further adds the death allegation also struck them with shock as many people remained uncertain on whether he was still alive.
“How can we vote for a dead man?" many of the voters reportedly said when approached by the campaign team in pursuit for votes, according to Mukalazi. They were also uncertain about the situation until they visited Kitalya to confirm that their candidate was still alive and in sound.
Godfrey Simbwa, a friend to Sserunkuma says that during his absence, several NUP supporters and leaders in the areas vigorously campaigned for him and also paid agents who were at each polling station on his behalf.