One person has died and several others have been injured following protests in Uganda over the arrest and detention of a popular MP, a police spokesman says.
According to local media reports, police fired teargas and shots in the air to break up crowds protesting over the arrest of MP Robert Kyagulanyi, who is also a musician, who goes by the stage name of Bobi Wine.
Kyagulanyi has suffered multiple injuries and fractures since his arrest last week, his lawyer Erias Lukwago told CNN.
One person died after a police officer fired on a minibus. Five others were injured during the shooting, police spokesman Emillian Kayima said.
Journalists, including a senior photographer for Reuters and two employees of local broadcaster NTV Uganda, were also arrested as they covered the protests in Uganda’s capital Kampala.
Military helicopters have been spotted flying low over Kampala and soldiers are patrolling the streets on foot and in military vehicles.
Lukwago told CNN Kyagulanyi has been tortured since his arrest last Monday.
“He could not stand because his leg had been injured. He was being carried by soldiers at the military court where he has been arraigned when I saw him. He complained of pain in his spine, and we could see he has really been beaten,” Lukwago said.
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Kyagulanyi was arrested alongside other opposition politicians last Monday after rioting broke between rival parties ahead of a local parliamentary election.
His lawyer said he is being tried in a military court and is facing charges of illegal possession of firearms for his alleged involvement in an attack on the President Yoweri Museveni’s car last Monday.
Museveni has dismissed allegations the MPs were being tortured in detention.
He said in a statement that doctors who examined the lawmaker said he had sustained “no head or chest injuries or bone fractures.”
Museveni, however, accused Kyagulanyi and his supporters of intimidating voters and rigging the election in the district.
Bukola Adebayo wrote and reported from Lagos and Samson Ntale reported from Uganda.