News24

Besigye says protests must go on

2011-06-13 14:39

Kampala - Ugandan opposition leader Kizza Besigye on Monday said cost of living protests must go on despite a lull in recent weeks that coincided with his being out of the country for medical treatment.

"The protests cannot die. These are not protests of Besigye but of the ordinary person," Besigye told journalists in Kampala, a day after he returned from the United States, where he received further medical care for injuries sustained in April at the hands of the security forces.

"The people are frustrated and popular discontent is only increasing," Besigye said, putting a recent lull in the protests down to a spate of national events, including the inauguration of a new parliament.

At least 10 people were killed and hundreds arrested when the government clamped down on a series of opposition protests over spiralling food and fuel prices in April and May.

Besigye appeared in a court close to Kampala on Monday to face charges of inciting violence and failure to obey police officers in three separate cases relating to the protests.

Despite objections from Besigye’s lawyers that the police had had enough time to complete investigations, all three cases were postponed until July 13 after the prosecution said that they needed more time to make enquiries.

Besigye said that while in the United States he had discussed the current situation in Uganda with senior officials at the State Department, including Assistant Secretary for Africa Johnnie Carson.