KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — Protests have broken out in Uganda’s capital, Kampala, after police arrested Bobi Wine, a musician and opposition politician who is seeking the presidency in next year’s election.
Wine’s supporters blocked roads and burned tires, prompting police to fire tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the protesters. Kampala Metropolitan police spokesman Patrick Onyango said they would soon issue a statement.
It was “total chaos” in the city, said the chairman of the Kampala City Traders Association, Evarest Kayongo. “The streets are empty ... We have closed business because of tear gas and bullets,” he said.
The protests started after Wine was arrested in the eastern town of Luuka and taken to a police station in the city of Jinja. It was not clear why he was arrested.
“We have not been allowed to see him and we don’t know what is happening,” asserted Joel Ssenyonyi, the spokesman for Wine’s political party, the National Unity Platform.
Wine, who has been arrested many times in recent years, has captured the imagination of many Ugandans with his persistent calls for President Yoweri Museveni to retire after 36 years in power.