Besigye, FDC officials denied bail, held in Mukono

Saturday October 21 2017

By VICTOR KIPROP
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Uganda’s Forum for Democratic Change politician and former presidential candidate Dr Kizza Besigye who was arrested on Thursday was on Friday denied bail. He is detained at Nagalama Police Station in Mukono District.

Dr Besigye, FDC presidential candidate Patrick Amuriat, and the party’s secretary for mobilisation Ingrid Turinawe were arrested at Bubaare sub-county in Rubanda while on their way to Kabale district, western Uganda, on allegations of attempted murder on policemen.

According to Mubarak Munyagwa, (MP, Kawempe South) who visited Dr Besigye on Friday, the detainees were denied bail even after he and the Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago offered to stand surety for them.

Earlier on Thursday, regional police commander Denis Namuwoza told the Monitor, “He is wanted in Rukungiri on charges of attempted murder of policemen and holding unlawful assembly.”

According to Mr Namuwoza, Dr Besigye allegedly on Wednesday told FDC supporters attending a political rally led by Mr Amuraiat to stone the police who were trying to break up the rally.

One person, identified as 22 year-old Edison Nasasira, is reported to have died from gunshot wounds and several others injured during the standoff. The police used live ammunition and teargas to disperse the crowd.

The police later denied shooting Mr Nasasira, claiming instead that he died after being hit by a stone during the clashes, while separate media reports attributed to the FDC placed the number of casualties at two.

The politicians’ arrests follows an earlier directive by the police banning what it termed illegal demonstrations and rallies called by opposition Members of Parliament over plans to remove presidential age limits.

“Consultations must not include illegal demonstrations and processions, inciting violence, use of hate campaigns and abusive language, acts of hooliganism of any sort or intimidation of any persons perceived to be supporting the removal of the age limits,” the assistant inspector general of police, Assuman Mugenyi, said in a statement.

On Thursday, Mr Mwesigwa was quoted by the Observer warning that they will break up the Joint Consultative meetings by the opposition if they flout police directives.

“The law allows us to prevent crime and our security assessment has concluded that whenever MPs consult in constituencies that are not theirs, they bring people who cause trouble,” he said.