Uganda

Kampala (AFP) Two people have died from the Marburg virus in eastern Uganda, in the country’s first outbreak of the deadly Ebola-like pathogen in three years, the health ministry said Thursday. “Blood samples were taken from two people who have since died and were found positive for Marburg”, Uganda’s health ministry permanent secretary, Dr. Diana Atwine told AFP. She said a team of experts had been sent to Kween district, near the Kenyan border, to contain the virus. “At moment we don’t know if there are other people apart fromRead More
Kampala (AFP) Ugandan police on Wednesday banned what it termed illegal demonstrations over plans to remove presidential age limits, seen as paving the way for President Yoweri Museveni to serve a sixth term in office. A bill removing the age limit for the president was introduced in parliament last month, and MPs are currently holding consultations with ordinary Ugandans to seek their views. “Consultations must not include illegal demonstrations, illegal processions, inciting violence, use of hate campaigns, use of abusive language, acts of hooliganism of any sort, intimidation of anyRead More
Kampala (AFP) “He will rule for life,” shrugged student and waiter Fahd Sabiti a day after Uganda’s parliament began scrapping presidential age limits, paving the way for Yoweri Museveni to win a sixth term in office. Sabiti’s ambivalence reflected the feelings of many Ugandans used to seeing President Museveni get his way after more than three decades in power. “The opposition politicians who fought yesterday in parliament are just noise-makers. They will fade away,” said the 23-year-old business administration student as he took a break from waiting tables in anRead More
Kampala (AFP) Uganda’s parliament on Wednesday took the first step towards scrapping the presidential age limit that would allow long-standing ruler Yoweri Museveni to stay in power. Tempers frayed for a second day over a plan, backed by members of President Museveni’s National Resistance Movement (NRM) party, to table a constitutional amendment doing away with age limits, allowing the 73-year-old to run for a sixth consecutive term in 2021. MPs brandished microphone stands, threw punches and clambered over benches as security officers sought to remove 25 lawmakers barred by SpeakerRead More
Kampala (AFP) Ugandan police on Thursday fired teargas at students who defied a police order banning protests as they demonstrated the proposed removal of presidential age limits that would allow President Yoweri Museveni to stand again in 2021. Police on Wednesday had issued an order banning protests in the east African county, but it was ignored by hundreds of students at the country’s main Makerere University. The students were tear-gassed, chased and detained by armed officers in return. Ruling party lawmaker Raphael Magyezi was due to table a motion inRead More
Kampala (AFP) Ugandan police have banned a protest set for Thursday when lawmakers debate plans to scrap a presidential age limit, seen as a bid to pave the way for Yoweri Museveni to seek a sixth term as leader. A ruling party lawmaker is expected to put forward a bill to amend a constitutional provision that states the president must be between 35 and 75 years old. Museveni, who has been in office since 1986, has said he is 73 years old, which under the current law would prevent himRead More
Kampala (AFP) A Ugandan court this week jailed four members of a Muslim sect for life on terrorism charges, a judgment denounced by some as the latest in a series of anti-Muslim rulings. On Tuesday Kampala’s High Court sentenced Sheikh Yunus Kamoga and three members of his Tabliq sect to life in prison, while two others were given 30 years each. But a day earlier the same court had acquitted Kamoga and 13 others of the murder and attempted murder of leaders of two rival Muslim factions — on theRead More
Kampala (AFP) The head of the International Committee of the Red Cross warned Monday that South Sudan’s inability to pay civil servants risked worsening a humanitarian crisis and urged donors to step in. ICRC chief Peter Maurer was in Kampala after a three-day visit to conflict-torn South Sudan, where he warned of a “spiral which no international actor can prevent” as civil servants working in critical sectors such as health and water services go unpaid. Maurer said he had “rarely seen another conflict in the world where the fighting andRead More
Arua (Uganda) (AFP) The number of South Sudanese who have fled to Uganda has hit one million, the UN said Thursday, with no end in sight to the war behind the world’s fastest-growing refugee crisis. The nearly four-year civil war has pushed an average of 1,800 South Sudanese into neighbouring Uganda every day for the past year, many of them women and children fleeing “barbaric violence”, according to the UN’s refugee agency (UNHCR). Another one million have sought refuge elsewhere in the region, but it is Uganda — one ofRead More
Kampala (AFP) For the last decade Ugandans have known two presidents: Yoweri Museveni, the country’s long-time ruler, and musician Robert Kyagulanyi a.k.a. Bobi Wine, a.k.a. His Excellency the Ghetto President. But in a surprising turn the 35-year-old reggae star — who was just three when Museveni took power at the head of a rebel army — on Thursday won a landslide victory in a city by-election to become the country’s newest lawmaker. Wine is a spectacularly popular Ugandan entertainer. For many, he embodies the struggles, frustrations and hopes of theRead More