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Police slap fresh criminal charges against Besigye

Besigye supporters on the streets before he got arrested

Police has slapped fresh charges of disobeying lawful orders against Dr Kizza Besigye – just hours after court dismissed a similar case against him.

Heavily armed police intercepted Besigye and hundreds of his supporters who were following him in a procession along the Kampala-Entebbe highway. Earlier in the morning, Makindye Magistrate's court dismissed a case against Besigye and Kampala lawyer Erias Lukwago citing failure by the state to produce witnesses.

Besigye’s car was towed to Jinja Road Police station and he was locked up with his driver, Fred Kato. Patrick Onyango, the Kampala Metropolitan spokesperson, says Besigye was arrested because he disobeyed lawful orders from a traffic officer not to lead a procession through the city center. He says that now that Besigye has resumed his defiance campaign, Police will apply to court to cancel his bail.

Besigye was early this month released on bail from Luzira Maximum prison where he had spent close to two months on treason charges.  According to Onyango, High court ordered Besigye not to involve himself in the defiance campaign until his case is concluded but he has defiantly failed to adhere to the bail conditions.

Shortly after his arrest, a number of FDC party officials led by Geoffrey Ekanya, Kampala mayor Erias Lukwago visited Besigye at Jinja Road Police station.
According to Lukwago, Besigye was illegitimately arrested, saying that after appearing at Makindye court he told him he was heading to the bank to carry out some transactions. He wondered how Besigye would access banking services if Police doesn't want him to go through the city centre where most of the banks are found.
Lukwago asked the police leadership to give Besigye some space to enjoy his freedoms like any other citizen. Lukwago said that it is appears Besigye is being witch hunted by some police officers.  This is the sixth time Besigye has been arrested since the year begun.

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