Crime & InvestigationElection 2016Politics

Police Make Arrests; Warn Besigye on City Vendor Protests

Uganda Police Force has Sunday arrested a key activist and warned the opposition against rallying disgruntled street vendors to destabilise Kampala city.
Doreen Nyanjura was reportedly picked by detectives in what appears a big plot by security to thwart opposition’s plans.
Police spokesperson Felix Kaweesi said the law enforcement body received “reliable information from intelligence sources that Dr. Kiiza Besigye, information pills Mr. Erias Lukwago and other political actors have been mobilizing and meeting vendors who were recently removed from the city streets with the aim of staging illegal demonstrations on Monday October 31, page 2016.”
The vendors were kicked off the streets on orders of Kampala Affairs Minister Beti Kamya to reduce congestion in the city.
They vowed to put up a fight as vending was their only source of livelihood.
But police now fear Besigye, who recently returned from a working tour in U.S., could mobilise the vendors to stage street battles with security forces.
“Uganda Police Force wishes to inform the general public that it has not received any notification concerning the planned demonstration and that any person who participates in such illegal activity commits a crime,” warned Kaweesi in a statement sent to this website on Sunday night.
He said Police shall take all “necessary measures to prevent such illegal acts and ensure that no persons disrupt the normal business life and peace in the city.”
Previous clashes between police and opposition groups have left a trail of destruction and bloodshed.
Police continue to monitor Dr Besigye’s movements and could most likely put him under house arrest tomorrow morning.
It is understood several people have some been picked by police from Besigye’s residence in Kasangati.
Kaweesi cautioned the public “not to be misled and hoodwinked by such opportunistic individuals whose agenda is to cause the breach of peace in the city.”
Any form of resistance staged by opposition in support of thousands of poor vendors would see the likes of Besigye gain political capital.
However, Kampala traders say the operations of vendors hurt their businesses yet the latter don’t pay taxes.
Kamya advised vendors to take up spaces in markets around the city.
Kampala could witness heavy deployment of security forces in the city today morning.
“Vendors and hawkers are advised to be patient and work with the ministry responsible for Kampala Capital City affairs to find alternative solutions,” warned Kaweesi.

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