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09 Nov 2020 | 12:23 PM UTC

Uganda: Police use tear gas to disperse demonstrators in Jinja November 9

Uganda News Alert

Police use tear gas to disperse demonstrators in Jinja on November 9 amid presidential campaigns; avoid protests as a precaution

TIMEFRAME expected from 11/9/2020, 12:00 AM until 11/11/2020, 11:59 PM (Africa/Kampala). COUNTRY/REGION Jinja


Police have dispersed demonstrators in the eastern city of Jinja on Monday, November 9, amid campaigning for the 2021 presidential election. Reports indicate that supporters of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) candidate Patrick Amuriat Oboi had gathered along a highway to cheer him as he headed east to begin campaigning. 

Strict coronavirus disease (COVID-19) measures have been implemented nationwide amid the campaigns, and security forces are likely to strictly enforce them. 

Further unrest is likely for the remainder of the day and in the coming days and weeks and may result in clashes between opposition supporters and security forces.


Political tensions in Uganda have been increasing ahead of the presidential election in 2021, after President Yoweri Museveni pushed through controversial constitutional reforms in December 2017 to remove the presidential age limit in a move widely seen as paving the way for him to stand for a sixth term in office. The debate around the proposed constitutional reforms was bitter with infighting within the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM), regular protests and several opposition leaders being arrested. However, Museveni and his supporters, backed by a closely-aligned and powerful military, have largely succeeded in suppressing opposition to his candidacy within the NRM.

Having come to prominence during the constitutional reform campaign, Robert Kyagulanyi has become a major opposition talisman following his move into politics in 2017. The outspoken critic of Museveni has been arrested multiple times by security forces on charges related to anti-government protests, with arrests sparking unrest amongst his populist support base. After announcing his bid to run for president in the 2021 general election in 2019, he assumed leadership of the National Unity, Reconciliation and Development Party and revamped it as the National Unity Platform, becoming the party's de facto presidential candidate.


Those in Uganda are advised to monitor the situation, avoid all demonstrations as a precaution, anticipate a heightened security presence, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.


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