Ugandan Presidential Candidate Resumes Campaign After Arrest

  • Besigye changed campaign procession route, police say
  • Opinion polls show Besigye is leading challenger to Museveni

Uganda’s main opposition presidential candidate, Kizza Besigye, resumed campaigning Monday in his bid to stop President Yoweri Museveni from extending his three-decade rule, hours after he was detained by the police.

Ugandan police detained Besigye earlier in the day after he allegedly tried to lead a campaign procession through the central business district of the capital, Kampala, deputy police spokeswoman Polly Namaye said by phone. The route wasn’t part of the itinerary Besigye agreed to with the Electoral Commission and police, she said. Besigye’s Forum for Democratic Change later said in a Twitter message that he had resumed campaigning for the Feb. 18 election.

An opinion poll conducted by Ipsos Research Feb. 1-8 showed Besigye trailing Museveni by a 28 percent to 53 percent margin, the Kampala-based Daily Monitor newspaper reported Feb. 12. Museveni, 71, has ruled Africa’s biggest coffee producer since January 1986. He faces seven challengers in the election.

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