KAMPALA, UGANDA – More than 30 opposition supporters were arrested at a prayer rally held on Friday in Kampala, the capital of Uganda. The rally, organized by musician and politician Bobi Wine, was attended by members of Wine’s National Unity Platform as well as the Conservative Party and the Forum for Democratic Change.
According to the Ugandan police, the rally was illegal because the organizers failed to inform the Inspector General of Police Okoth Ochola in advance, as required by law due to ongoing terrorism threats. However, opposition member Joel Ssenyonyi disputed this claim, stating that they had informed the police and asked for security, but were not required to seek permission.
The rally was held to pray for those who have been arrested, abducted, or have gone missing in the past two years. In the past two years, many opposition supporters in Uganda have been abducted and taken to unknown detention centers, with some returning maimed and alleging torture, and others suspected to have died or still be in detention.
President Yoweri Museveni has denied any knowledge of these abductions and claims that any mistakes made by security personnel are being corrected. The arrests at Friday’s prayer rally have further sparked concern among opposition supporters and human rights groups about the treatment of political dissidents in Uganda.