Uganda opposition leader charged, released

Besigye and five others are accused of inciting the public to assault a police officer.

Uganda police block opposition leader Dr Kizza Besigye's car when they intercepted on his way to Kabale town near the border with Rwanda on October 19, 2017. PHOTO | ROBERT MUHEREZA  

IN SUMMARY

  • Besigye was arrested last week following the killing of an opposition supporter during a protest, ruled illegal by authorities, in the western city of Rukungiri.
  • Senor FDC official says Besigye and five others had been "freed on non-cash bail of five million shillings ($1,400)".
  • The six have denied all charges. The next court hearing is due in Rukungiri on November 18.

Uganda's main opposition leader Kizza Besigye and five others were charged with inciting violence and freed from jail on Wednesday after six nights in detention.

Besigye was arrested last week following the killing of an opposition supporter during a protest, ruled illegal by authorities, in the western city of Rukungiri.

The protesters were marching against a ruling party plan to amend the constitution to remove presidential age limits, a move that would allow President Yoweri Museveni to vie for a sixth consecutive term in 2021.

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Mugisha Muntu, a senior official of the opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), said Besigye and five others had been "freed on non-cash bail of five million shillings ($1,400)".

Area police spokesman Elly Maate said the six are accused of inciting the public to assault a police officer, attacking the officer's house and damaging a police vehicle.

"Besigye and the others are also charged with disobedience of lawful duty by holding an unauthorised rally in Rukungiri on October 18, 2017," Maate said.
The six have denied all charges. The next court hearing is due in Rukungiri on November 18.

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