Protests have broken out in different parts of the country following the arrest of Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, the National Unity Platform (NUP) presidential candidate.
Kyagulanyi was arrested from Luuka district headquarters moments after his arrival to address a presidential campaign meeting.
Heavily armed police officers surrounded the venue amidst merry making by the presidential candidate’s supporters.
The police, commanded by Frank Mwesigwa, the Busoga and Bukedi Zonal commander overseeing the 2021 general elections, soon surrounded Kyagulanyi’s car resulting into a scuffle between the police and music pop star’s aides and official security.
Many including a journalist, Ashraf Kasirye, got injured and rushed to various health facilities for medical attention.
Kyagulanyi was later taken into a waiting police mobile detention van and driven to Nalufenya police station in Jinja, about 54 kms away.
Police then fired teargas to disperse the crowd at Luuka as well as in other areas in Kamuli and Buyende districts where the NUP leader planned to hold campaign meetings.
Protests also broke out in other parts of the country such as Kampala and Masaka where police used bullets and teargas to disperse Kyagulanyi’s agitated supporters.
Masaka town’s suburb of Nyendo is reported to be a no-go-area for the faint hearted as the police continue to battle protesters who have lit old car tyres in the middle of the road, cutting off access to Masaka town centre.
In downtown Kampala, several people have been injured in the shooting. At Ben Kiwanuka street, a car painted in NRM colours with inscriptions promoting President Yoweri Museveni’s candidature was driven into a crowd on the opposite side of the road.
Two men occupying it were saved by the police from being lynched.
Outside Nalufenya police station, some youths and a physically disabled woman were arrested for protesting Kyagulanyi’s arrest.