Sixteen people have been killed in Uganda after the army and police opened fire on supporters of detained opposition leader, Bobi Wine.
The security forces fired teargas and rubber bullets at angry protesters who set fires, barricaded roads. They looted stores in the capital Kampala, as calls mounted for calm ahead of the January 14 elections.
Wine, 38, who is also a presidential hopeful for the general elections, has faced multiple arrests and harassment since he decided to run against the 76-year-old dictator, Yoweri Museveni.
He was arrested on Wednesday after police violently broke into his vehicle and took him into custody for allegedly violating coronavirus measures at his rallies, over the large crowds attending.
“The death toll is now 16, with 45 injuries, some serious injuries,” Kampala police chief, Moses Kafeero, told AFP, without giving details of those killed.
“About 350 people have been arrested for participating in violent acts including looting, destruction of property, traffic disruption, theft and robberies during the riots,” he added.
Protests kicked off on Wednesday when police said seven were killed, after Wine’s detention ahead of a rally.
Pockets of protests continued throughout the day in Kampala and other major towns, with youths barricading roads, starting fires and engaging in running battles with police who lobbed tear gas and fired rubber bullets at protesters, and in some cases, fired live bullets.
SaharaReporters, New York