January 28, 2001
volume 12, no. 28

Uganda Cardinal Urges Voters to Choose Moral Candidates

    KAMPALA, Uganda, Jan. 26, 01 ( - Cardinal Emmanuel Wamala, the head of the Catholic Church in Uganda, on Tuesday told a press conference that the Church will not back any candidate in the March 6 presidential elections.

    The cardinal however advised Ugandans to vote for a candidate with a high moral character and record, who is God-fearing and prepared to listen and work with others. He said that though some candidates, including the incumbent president Yoweri Kaguta Museveni had met with him, the Church will remain impartial.

    "The Catholic Church has no official position on any candidate. The guidelines are for Ugandans to see which candidate answers the needs of the common people," the prelate said in a 13-page pastoral letter. The letter further urged Ugandans to vote for a person who is "forthright, unselfish, firm, and objective and committed to promoting the common good."

    The cardinal said Ugandans needed a person of exemplary leadership in society and general economic empowerment of the community right from the family unit. He said Ugandans should look for a government committed to the improvement of the quality of life through "equal opportunities and through fair distribution of national wealth."

    "Ugandans expect a government which will work towards establishing real and lasting peace both within and outside the country's borders," the cardinal said. He urged Ugandans to denounce the buying of voter cards on the election eve and all other kinds of manipulation and bribery.

    "True though that the Church must be distinguished from the state, it can not be ignored or completely separated from it," Cardinal Wamala said. "We deserve leaders who will not condone immorality such as corruption, abortion, homosexuality, or any other forms of behavior which are contrary and offensive to God's law and our own culture," he added.

January 28, 2001
volume 12, no. 28
News from the Universal Church
Return to Today's Issue