Ugandan police have prohibited a rally that was planned to celebrate the overthrow the dictators of North Africa, citing such a public event could lead to violence.
The purpose of the rally is likely to incite the public into violence, said police spokesman Vincent Sekate.
Opponents of President Yoweri Museveni, including a group called ‘Activists For Change’ sought to stage a rally on Friday to celebrate people power in North Africa and even printed a flyer suggesting the removal of Museveni from power is imminent.
Museveni has ruled Uganda since 1986 – his re-election in February of this year has led to accusations the victory was secured through fraud.
A government crackdown on anti-Museveni protesters in April led to the deaths of at least nine people. Rising costs of food and fuel have also sparked discontent.
The principal leader of the opposition, Kizza Besigye, was arrested on charges of inciting violence (charges were later dropped).
The collapse of the long-entrenched regimes in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia has become a grave concern among leaders of many black African nations who may be worried they could be next.
Sub-Saharan nations, including Uganda, Zimbabwe and South Africa, have refused to recognize the National Transitional Council (NTC), the interim government of Libya who appear to have overthrown Moammar Gadhafi.
Indeed, Gadhafi is viewed favorably among many in black Africa, due to his huge financial support of the African Union (AU) and his long-time goals of establishing a ‘United Africa.’
Museveni has vociferously opposed the NATO bombing campaign in Libya.
Gadhafi has invested millions of dollars in Uganda. Indeed, during the Islamic holiday of Eid el-Fitr, thousands of Ugandan Muslims prayed for Gadhafi and the end of the civil war in Libya.
In recent days, Ugandan government officials have denied reports that Gadhafi was seeking asylum in the country.
Col. Moammar Gadhafi has not sought asylum from the government of Uganda in the first place. It is therefore wrong for assumptions to be made that Col. Gadhafi has been denied asylum, read a statement from the state-owned Uganda Media Center.