Besigye arrested again for protesting high commodity prices
Former presidential candidate, Dr Kizza Besigye has been arrested for protesting government inaction to cushion vulnerable Ugandans against skyrocketing commodity prices.
The People's Front for Transition (PFT) leader was on Tuesday intercepted in downtown Kampala where he had started mobilizing traders to "'wake up" and join him in what he described as the struggle to liberate Uganda from President Museveni’s government that has been in power since 1986.
His arrest happened just hours before President Museveni presides over budget reading at Kololo ceremonial grounds.
Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson, Patrick Onyango said that Dr Besigye disrupted business, traffic flow and incited violence.
According to him, police were forced to tow Dr Besigye’s vehicle registration number UAK 773K to Central Police Station (CPS). He was later whisked off to Kampala central police station and later transferred to Naggalama police station in Mukondo District, together with his right-hand man in the protests, Mr Samuel Walter Lubega Mukaaku.
"Following his release from prison on bail a few days ago, Dr Kizza Besigye today went ahead to hold unlawful assembly and inciting people in the Central Business District of Kampala. His action led to disruption of businesses and smooth flow of traffic. It's against that background that his vehicle was impounded and towed to CPS Kampala. He's being kept at Naggalama Police Station," Mr Onyango said on Tuesday.
Dr Besigye has since last month, through his pressure group, PFT been mobilizing Ugandans to protest the high cost of living. Dr Besigye believes that their drive will awaken the citizens to protest the government’s failure to act on high commodity prices.
Dr Besigye wants President’s Museveni’s government to reclaim the funds swindled by corrupt officials so that they can be used to enhance the salaries of civil servants and give relief to schools, among others.
Since the start of the year, prices of essential household commodities have been soaring with many people struggling to make ends meet. Although several people have been calling on the government to make some intervention their calls have fallen on deaf ears with government blaming the crisis on external factors like Covid-19 and exacerbated by Russia invasion of Ukraine which disrupted the global supply chain.
Additional reporting by URN