The past two months have seen the Acholi sub region experience heated political environment and activities in preparation for 2016 due to the relative calm and return of peace in the region.
However, political analysts predict a wild wind of political change in the sub region. The most scared and have been spending sleepless nights have been the old guard who now face a new breed of politicians who have been under pressure from their electorates to stand and create a different brand of political attitude in the sub region.
Many view the old guard as greatly unreliable and were largely entrepreneurs of conflict and have served so long without any visible sign of development in their constituencies. Among incumbents who have become regulars in their constituencies and are trying to find survival means are, Hon. Jacob Oulanya the Deputy Speaker who faces an uphill battle retaining his Omoro county seat.
Reagan Okumu of Acwa who has served for long as MP and many now view as a future liability, Christopher Acire of Gulu municipality whose anti stand regarding the anti gay bill has made him less popular , Hon, Richard Todwong in Nwoya, Gilbert Olanya of Kilak county.
Below is the list of youths expected to make a political drive in the Acholi sub region come 2016.
1.Hon. Todwong Richard,Minister without portfolio and Ag. Secretary General of NRM and MP Nwoya.
At national level he has done well mobilizing for the ruling party and getting himself promoted within the shortest time to hold different offices both in government and his ruling NRM party. His biggest undoing will be explaining to his electorate his role in the Mbabazi sacking, his silence over the Amuru land giveaways, his brother Brigadier Otema Awany’s alleged involvement in Human Rights violation during the insurgency might still resurface to haunt his ambitions and continuous land wrangles between his family and other people in Nwoya.However,many analysts believe he will retain the seat but with lots of hardship.
2. Awany Tony. Currently working for the office of the President.
He is one of the most gifted orators of his generation who extremely excelled at university and is remembered as one of those on whom northern Ugandan security relied upon during the insurgence, In the last election he was narrowly defeated in the NRM primaries by his cousin Richard Todwong in an election many of his supporters believe was full of intimidation and voter bribery. This time round many people await his return and is best viewed as the person Todwong will sweat plasma to beat. His biggest low is the string of women and kids his had with them .
3. Mwaka Emmanuel Lutukumoi. Deputy RDC LIRA and former DP spokesperson.
He quit DP after his own President Norbert Mao chose to support Christopher Acire for the Gulu municipality seat. Many believe with the current political turn of events,Mwaka would have won the seat with a landslide victory had he stayed with DP and maintained his NGO which provided shelter to displace children during the insurgency. He commands strong respect among the elderly people. His biggest low will be the Mao factor, his unprecedented divorce from his Japanese wife and his deployment in Lira instead of Gulu.
4. Akena Andrew Okullu. City Tycoon, Educationist, Aid worker and Medic.
Much as he has denied any interests in politics, his frequent visits to the region and the sudden philanthropy to women, youths groups and health centers suggest otherwise, many analysts believe the coming in of Akena into politics would actually change the economic status of politics in Acholi sub region. He is an ardent admirer and promoter of President Museveni’s economic and agricultural policies in the region especially rural electrification and NAADS. However ,his poor command of the Acholi language and continuous debate of his source of wealth could easily be his biggest undoing also his past involvement in dirty businesses , and people involved in corruption scandals, arrogance and analysts believe he might fall victim to voter bribery.
5. Ojara Martin Mapenduzi. Gulu LC V.
He has excelled as one of the best Local council leaders in the country. But his decision to announce his candidature for the Gulu municipality seat, brings in the biggest threat to Christopher Acire the incumbent MP for the Municipality. He is a good orator and mobiliser for his party FDC.His biggest undoing is the persistent accusations of his involvement in corruption.
6. Okello Oryem Alfred. City Lawyer and businessman
He is more known as an excellent lawyer with one of the most brilliant minds remembered for his role in the Bad black case, Bamugemereirwe tribunal and seats as Legal officer on many boards. little is known about his political abilities. However, word is clear that he intends to stand for MP come 2016.His only undoing is his involvement with a TV presenter turned actor which is threatening to break his marriage and many believe the Lukwago ghost could resurface to destroy his ambitions.
7. Owor Arthur aka Big Spender. Senior lecturer and Reseacher.
He is one of the brightest brains of his generation in Northern Uganda. Like Ojara Martin Mapenduzi and Akena Andrew okullu, their first political abilities were revealed during their political analytical show in 2005 on a local fm station. Many believe, he could easily take the municipality seat due to his vast youth support base. His biggest undoing could be a lack of a Militant nature which is a special ingredient for politics in the region.
8. Komakech Lyandro,Senior Lecturer and Researcher and Former UYD president
He is the most experienced of the group and has virtually mentored all the above. Many believe it is just unfortunate that luck has eluded him. He is an ardent leader and supporter of the Democratic Party and many believe he would trounce any opponent if he stood outside the municipality the Mao factor could see Komakech finally realize his dream.