Besigye to stay under house arrest

2011-10-25 19:39
Kampala - Uganda will keep opposition leader Kizza Besigye under house arrest until he promises to stop participating in anti-government protests that have marred the nation's image, national police said on Tuesday.

A senior official in his party rejected the demand and said his supporters were mobilising to free Besigye.

Early this year, a spate of opposition led, anti-government protests - stoked by rampant inflation, escalating corruption and extravagance of public officials - rocked the east African country boasting the third largest economy in the region.

Besigye, head of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Uganda's biggest opposition party ranged against long-ruling President Yoweri Museveni, has been the galvanising figure for the popular unrest.

He has been confined to his home in the town of Kasangati outside the capital Kampala since Oct. 18, when he attempted to join the second round of the so-called "walk-to-work" protests.

"We'll keep him under preventive arrest and our personnel will not allow him to leave his house," said police spokesperson, Judith Nabakoba. "Regaining his liberty and freedom will depend on his judgement. He will have to first renounce participating in violent activities and disrupting peace."

Police have arrested dozens of opposition members across the country over the last several days for joining the protests, in which motorists and commuters abandon vehicles and instead walk to their workplaces.

Seven of those arrested have been charged with treason and three with concealment of treason.

Broken economy

FDC deputy foreign secretary Ann Mugisha said Besigye would not comply with police demands and that his backers were being summoned to converge at his home to liberate him.

"Besigye is a strong and determined man and he won't give in to intimidation... We're mobilising his supporters and they're the ones who will go to his home and liberate him."

The commander of the police unit stationed outside Besigye's gate, Sam Omara, told local television on Monday evening that they had banned Besigye from receiving visitors after being embarrassed by a group of university students.

After a brief visit to Besigye, the students donated a potty, a bucket and rolls of toilet paper to the policemen who Besigye had accused of lacking toilet facilities.

"Of course their intention is starve him, they have already remanded his aides... but there are thousands of people of good who will keep sending him food," Mugisha said.

For the third time, Besigye stood and lost to Museveni in an election in February this year, but he rejected the results, asserting that the vote had been rigged.

In power for 25 years, Museveni was initially credited with restoring the rule of law and fixing a broken economy in Uganda but has subsequently been accused of becoming increasingly autocratic and seeking to be president for life.

Read more on:    kizza besigye  |  uganda  |  east africa

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]


Farms R 39 900 000


Farms R 12 000 000

Travel - Look, Book, Go! - shop online today

Save up to 40% on outdoor accessories!

Tents, sleeping, day packs and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Month End Madness Sale!

Save up to 60% on across a wide range of goods from books to electronics, DVDs and many more. Sale end 31 January 2015. Shop now!

Valentine’s Day gifts – 14 Feb!

Gifts to spoil him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

30% off fragrances

Get 30% off fragrances for him and her. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off All Textbooks

Save up to 30% off an extensive range of prescribed textbooks for all major universities and FET colleges. Shop Now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25


Spontaneity and bright ideas are emphasized today but there is a tendency to be too impulsive and you may want to keep a handle more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.