Riots break out in Kampala, leaving one dead

AFP/Marc Hofer

Rioting broke out in the streets of Kampala Friday, leaving one person dead and 78 hospitalised, say the Uganda Red Cross. As rioters set fire to tyres, police fired tear gas and live rounds. The violence comes one day after Uganda’s opposition leader was arrested for the fourth time this month.


The rioting spread to several suburbs, including three towns outside Kampala, and Mbale in the east. Besides burning tyres, rioters also set up road blocks around the market area in the centre of the capital.

In the casualty ward of Kampala’s main hospital, medical staff rushed to cope with the high number of patients, some of whom were forced to lie on mattresses on the floor due to lack of space.

On Thursday, opposition leader Kizza Besigye was arrested by police, who smashed his car windows before pushing him into the back of a pick-up truck.

Besigye had only just been released from a week in custody. His previous arrests came after he lead protests against rising food and fuel prices.

President Museveni says the soaring costs in Uganda recently are due to inflation and meteorological and global economic factors, however protesters believe it is due to bad governance.

Besigye, who lost to President Yoweri Museveni for the third time in elections held in February, says the elections were rigged.

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