Col Kizza Besigye has formally been charged with treason at Nakawa Chief Magistrate court and remanded back to Luzira prison.
Besigye appeared in a court session that lasted only about 10 minutes, 30 minutes earlier than the scheduled 9am session. The session led by Nakawa Chief Magistrate James Eremye was attended by only early-bird journalists and a couple of lawyers.
Court heard that Besigye, a runner up in the February 18 presidential election, and others still at large, between February 20 and May 11, planned to forcefully ascend to the Office of the President when he declared himself the elected president of Uganda. He is also accused of inciting residents to defy lawful orders to attend his illegal swearing in ceremony in a non-specified place.
He was remanded until June 1 when the case returns for mention. After he was remanded, Besigye asked court to allow him to raise a matter of concern to his life.
He told court that it has now become an official policy of police to persecute him. But Dorrem Elima, one of the prosecutors objected saying he was pre-empting the details of the case.
This is the second time that Besigye, a four-time presidential candidate is charged with treason in less than a week. He was on May 13, arraigned before Moroto Chief Magistrate Charles Yeteise and charged with the same offense and remanded to Moroto government prison until May 25.
However he was relocated to Luzira prison after prosecution led by Moroto Resident State Attorney Peter Amalo requested to have Besigye's file relocated to Nakawa court on grounds that the treason charges were allegedly committed in Kampala and Wakiso areas and not Moroto.
Further in the state's justification to have Dr Besigye's file transferred to Kampala, Amalo said his presence in Moroto prison had become a 'security threat' to the area.
The decision by judiciary to re-charge Besigye has been described as time wasting by FDC secretary general Nandala Mafabi.
"I have here the charge sheet of Dr Kizza Besigye, it was prepared at CID headquarters [in Kampala] on May 13, 2016 but it was sanctioned by the State Attorney in Moroto. Why didn't the DPP who is in Kampala not sanction it?
Two, why is it that the magistrate had to sign on the charge sheet? So this politically motivated charges, they are always making mistakes and that clearly shows that President Museveni who now calls himself president of Uganda never won an election because if he won, he would not be fighting a loser. He is trying to legitimise what is not right", Nandala said.
Besigye is contesting the outcome of the February 18 presidential election in which he emerged runner-up. Results by the Electoral Commission gave Yoweri Museveni ruling party National Resistance Movement candidate a win over seven other contenders.
Source: The Observer