Ugandan opposition figure Kizza Besigye was charged with treason late on Friday for declaring himself president and challenging the election victory of veteran leader Yoweri Museveni, officials from both camps said.
The charge – which carries the death penalty – marked an escalation in recent confrontations between the government and Besigye who has been repeatedly arrested and accused authorities of beatings and intimidation.
Tensions have mounted since the disputed February poll and authorities this week blocked Facebook, Twitter, Whatsapp and other social media, saying they were worried about security around Museveni’s official inauguration on Thursday.
Government spokesman Shaban Bantariza said Besigye had been charged with treason because he had declared himself “an alternative president”.
“He has openly declared his intention to topple this government, that’s not constitutional,” he said.
Authorities have dismissed accusations of targeting Besigye, saying they have only acted to keep order.
Source: Standard Digital