Dissident Ugandan general arrested ahead of elections

By Editorial Board - 1 February 2016 at 2:15 pm


KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — A military general who opposes Uganda’s longtime president was arrested ahead of presidential elections next month, his lawyer said Sunday.

Gen. David Sejusa, who has called President Yoweri Museveni a dictator, is being detained at a military barracks in the Ugandan capital Kampala, said Ladislaus Rwakafuuzi. Sejusa’s home was surrounded by armed military police early Sunday, he said.

Sejusa’s arrest is likely to raise tensions ahead of presidential elections on Feb. 18.

It was not possible to get a comment from the government or military.

Museveni, who is campaigning for re-election, has ruled Uganda since 1986, when he led a group of rebels who had waged a bush war against a government they accused of rigging elections.

Sejusa was one of the senior commanders of those rebels and eventually became a four-star general, was on the military high command and led Uganda’s domestic and external spy agencies.

Now Sejusa openly accuses Museveni of violating the ideals for which they waged that guerrilla war.

In 2013, Sejusa wrote a letter to the domestic spy chief urging him to investigate allegations of a plot to kill high-ranking government officials seen as being opposed to the political rise of Museveni’s son, a brigadier who commands the country’s special forces. Facing likely arrest, Sejusa, who, was traveling in Europe at the time, sought asylum in London. He quietly returned home in Dec. 2014.

“It is thought that the Museveni regime, which has ruled Uganda for nearly 30 years, and may be facing defeat at the coming elections … has a plan to arrest top Uganda pro-democracy activists, like General Sejusa, so as to forestall possible mass uprising that is seen as inevitable should Museveni refuse to hand over power to the victorious political opposition,” Free Uganda, a pro-democracy group, said in a statement.

RODNEY MUHUMUZA, Associated Press

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Editorial Board

Editorial Board

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