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Besigye freed after 8-hour standoff on Gayaza road

Besigye speaks to a crowd at Kasangati.

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Police on Thursday allowed Dr. Kizza Besigye, the leader of the people’s front for transition to return home, after holding him for more than seven hours in his car.

In the morning Police intercepted Besigye shortly after living in his residence where he had spent six days under preventive arrest to stop him from leading protests against the high commodity prices.

Shortly after addressing journalists, Dr. Besigye jumped in his land cruiser, whose windscreens are sealed by wire mesh and mounted with megaphones, and tried to make his way to Kampala via Kampala-Gayaza road. However, a team of police officers cut him off as they blocked his vehicle at the front and back using patrol vehicles.

They also erected barricades using spikes to stop Besigye from continuing with his planned journey. The officers dispersed pockets of residents who had lined up along the road to cheer Besigye while singing the resistance song.

In the evening, Members of Parliament led by Kyamuswa County MP Moses Kabuusu pleaded with the Police to allow Besigye to return home. After an hour of negotiations, the police accepted to let Besigye go.

Kabuusu says that Besigye agreed to return home but on the condition that police should not place him under house arrest.

After the negotiations, police removed the patrols and spikes that had blocked Besigye’s car, and was driven back to his residence amid jubilations from Kasangati town council residents.

Besigye noted that his standoff with the police was just the beginning of his struggle to awaken Ugandans who are being affected by the hard economic times.

He noted that although he did not go to his intended destination, he successfully reached Kasangati town council hoping that next time he will reach far until when his message reaches the targeted audience.

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