Uganda Probes Ex-Spy Head for Opposition-Group Links Before Vote

  • General who's criticized government detained Sunday in capital
  • Government says groups plan civil disobedience campaign

Uganda said it’s investigating a former spy chief over possible links to groups allegedly planning unrest if President Yoweri Museveni extends his 30-year rule in an election later this month.

General David Sejusa was detained Sunday in the capital, Kampala, and will be taken to court on Tuesday, according to NTV Uganda, a local broadcaster. The ex-intelligence head had a public disagreement with Museveni and left the East Africa nation in May 2013, returning about 18 months later. He’s previously been arrested on accusations of holding illegal gatherings.

Uganda is “investigating reports that appear to link” Sejusa to groups that have “sinister plans” for civil disobedience, government spokesman Ofwono Opondo said Monday in an e-mailed statement. “If found to be true, appropriate actions will certainly be taken to curtail and neutralize his activities.”

Museveni, 71, who’s ruled African’s biggest coffee exporter since January 1986, is one of eight contenders in the Feb. 18 vote. He faces challenges from Kizza Besigye, who’s standing for the fourth time, and former Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi, who was fired in September 2014.

Opondo also warned foreign diplomats against interfering in the country’s politics, saying the government seeks “mutual respect to its sovereignty in accordance with international laws, norms and practices.”

Members of some embassies’ missions “unduly meddle” and should instead address their issues through diplomatic channels, Opondo said. He didn’t specify which embassies.

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