On Thursday, Kyagulanyi, the leader of the National Unity Platform (NUP) party, was taken from the airport in Entebbe and driven away without going through the local immigration authorities.
As of Friday, he is still prevented from leaving his home, and many of his supporters have been arrested.Amsterdam, the international lawyer, stated that they are documenting rights violations related to Kyagulanyi’s arrest.
“I have been in touch with Bobi Wine regarding his illegal home detention by Ugandan agents. They have unlawfully entered the property, harassed staff, and prevented him from meeting with other party members,” he said.
Kampala Police spokesperson Patrick Onyango explained that their actions were aimed at preventing the planned ‘One Million March’ that the opposition leader was allegedly organizing upon his return to Uganda.
Kyagulanyi had traveled outside the country last month after his national rallies were banned by the police, who accused him of making sectarian speeches.
Upon landing at Entebbe on Thursday morning, Kyagulanyi was immediately apprehended by the police and taken to his home, bypassing the normal immigration clearance procedures.
Kyagulanyi said on Friday that he was technically not in Uganda.Preventive arrests have been used by security agents in the past to restrict the movement of leading opposition politicians, sometimes holding them for days.
Dr.Kizza Besigye, a four-time presidential candidate, experienced similar treatment for several weeks after the 2016 elections, which the opposition labeled as fraudulent and not meeting the expected standards.
Onyango previously stated that Kyagulanyi was taken from the airport to his home in Magere, Wakiso District, on the outskirts of Kampala, to prevent a procession that could disrupt travel on the Kampala-Entebbe route, which covers a distance of 43 kilometers.
“We wish to inform the public that the NUP President Hon Kyagulanyi Robert was successfully escorted by our security team from Entebbe to his home in Magere.
He reached his home around 11.20 am and is with his family and friends,” Onyango said.Upon his arrival, there was a heavy security presence around Kyagulanyi’s house and compound.
He stated that his guard was manhandled, and his party members were blocked from accessing his home, with tear gas being used to disperse many of them.
Kyagulanyi had just returned from a tour that took him to several countries, including Canada and South Africa.
Last month, the police banned rallies organized by the NUP leader after he was accused of making sectarian statements that threatened the peace and unity of Ugandans.
During a rally in Luweero, Central Uganda, Kyagulanyi called on his listeners to take note of the injustices and identify the tribes behind them, with the intention of seeking revenge.
Despite initially insisting that he would proceed with the rallies and nationwide tours, his first since losing the 2021 general elections where he secured 35% of the vote, coming second to President Yoweri Museveni, Kyagulanyi quickly flew abroad.
The Uganda Police had warned supporters not to form processions to receive Kyagulanyi after plans for a One Million March were announced.
The police spokesperson, Patrick Onyango, stated, “The organizers of this welcome back event are advised to stop mobilizing, and the public is also advised not to participate in an illegality.
Security agencies will ensure that no one engages in an illegal procession, and anyone arrested will be taken to court.”
However, despite the police warning, his supporters insisted on organizing the procession.
Deputy party spokesperson Waiswa Mafumbiro said, “Welcoming our president is an initiative of the people, and as party leaders, we are in full support of the arrangements.”