- East Africa
- Politics - Election
Opposition leader in Uganda tear-gased
The leader of the main opposition paty, Forum for Democracy (FDC), Dr Kiiza Besigye was Thursday arrested by police after he stormed into the Uganda Electoral Commission without notification.
Dr Kiiza Besigye claims to have "gone there to advise the Electoral commission to ensure that the 2011 elections are free and fair so that the country is not thrown into chaos due to election malpractices."
The opposition leader was tear-gased alongside his supporters and arrested by the police. He was released after having been held inside the Electoral Commission’s premises for about two hours.
However, six female members of his party who had escorted him were taken to Kampala central police for rioting outside the Electoral commission offices and causing chaos in that part of the city.
After his release Dr. Besigye warned that the Electoral Commission should be ready to follow the elections laws and hold a free and fair election if they want peace to prevail in the country because the opposition is ready to fight tooth and nail to ensure such rigging on unfairness in elections are avoided.
The Inspector general of police, Kale Kayihura has condemned Besigye’s act saying the opposition leader "is not behaving like a good leader. A good leader should always desist from causing chaos."
According to the police chief, their intelligence had been informed that FDC supporters led by Kiiza Besigye had plans to stop people from attending today’s national prayers for a peaceful 2011 election in Kampala.
"When we deployed heavily near the place where elections were held, they resorted to attacking the electoral commission offices" said Kaiyura.
Meanwhile, Kiiza Besigye has warned the ruling National Resistance Movement and the Electoral Commission against any electoral malpractices in the forthcoming elections, saying the opposition is ready to fight against malpractices.
FDC, according to its leader, will engage in the 2011 elections well aware the current Electoral Commission, headed by Eng. Dr. Badru Kiggundui, is not fair and the ruling party, NRM has a big chance to rig the elections.
Uganda is set to hold presidential and general elections early next year. So far 5 people, including incumbent president Yoweri Museveni have returned nomination forms to the electoral commission.