Kizza Besigye has to be one of the most arrested politicians in recent history, his case is made even more unique by the fact that his arrests often do not lead to incarcerations, in fact, he is hardly ever charged. It would almost seem like the Ugandan police have befriended him and need to continually see his face and converse with him. Kizza Besigye however, is fed up with the continuous arrests and is calling on the international community to step in.
Besigye has amassed quite the impressive number of followers and often has crowds doggedly following him when he steps out of his house. This phenomenon mostly leads to traffic jams and it seems the police in an attempt to quash this happening have taken to picking him up, taking him to their base and later driving him back to his house at night without charging him of any crime.
Besigye and the Kampala Lord mayor, Erias Lukwago addressed the media yesterday calling for an intervention from the international community to end the brutality that they and their supporters are subjected to at the hands of the Ugandan police. The two insist that the level of impunity for violence which is occasioned on opposition leaders and their supporters has now reached unacceptable levels.
Kizza Besigye Is Fed Up
Their statement is likely a follow-up from their latest arrest two days ago which saw the police take Besigye, Lukwago and other opposition leaders who were returning from a court hearing in Kabale in western Uganda. Being intercepted at Rwamucucu as Besigye and colleagues headed to his home district of Rukungiri, the police said he was likely to cause security problems by entering the district.
They were therefore briefly detained at Ntungamo police station and were later driven back to their homes in Kampala at about 11pm while their vehicles were released by police and given back to the drivers this morning. Is it any wonder then that Kizza Besigye is fed up?
Before that, just last week, masked goons, in the company of police officers were seen beating up people who were following Besigye as he drove through the city on his way to Najjanankumbi for the his party’s weekly prayers. Police later denounced the group and launched an investigation. With this call, Besigye says that he wants to start a process of seeking for international remedies in Uganda as all the local institutions offer no justice. He said this as he alleged that he had reported a number of cases to Uganda’s Human rights Commission since he first joined the race for the presidency in 2001, all to no avail.