Three people are reportedly dead and several injured in riots that are still underway in the Ugandan capital, Kampala.
The city was engulfed in a series of demonstrations after traders took to the streets. Police fired tear gas canisters at demonstrators, said Joseph Kiggundu, a photographer for a Ugandan newspaper, the Daily Monitor.
When the police ran out of tear gas, he continued, “They resorted to using live bullets.” The demonstrators are protesting the government’s effort to block Kabaka Ronald Mutebi from touring Bugerere County, Kayunga District, this coming weekend.
The Kabaka is a traditional leader of the Baganda who live in central Uganda. “Right now, said Kiggundu, “the people are undeterred. But the businesses are closed. There is chaos everywhere.”
Olive Eyotara, a reporter for The Daily Monitor, told VOA that the situation was tense. “So far three people have been killed. One was a security guard with Saracen. Two other were killed at different times during the day near Shoprite on Entebbe road.”
She too reported that police were using bullets. “Yes, they are using live ammunitions; they are mostly shooting in the air. People are dispersing. I think the situation is getting out of hand.”
The government has not yet issued a comment, Eyotara said, but members of parliament have demanded an explanation from the minister of internal affairs, which has authority over the police, and he promised to issue a statement.
Reports from Kampala also say the government has not yet clarified its position on the Kabaka’s visit to Kayunga.
Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni was scheduled to meet members of parliament from the Buganda region Thursday to discuss the tension between the most populous ethnic group and the government.