KAMPALA, Uganda Jul 2 – Prominent Ugandan opposition leader Kizza Besigye has entered next year’s election race against veteran President Yoweri Museveni, one of Africa’s longest-serving leaders, a report said Thursday.
A key leader of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Besigye is currently in Britain and submitted his nomination form in absentia, according to the Daily Monitor newspaper.
Current FDC president Mugisha Muntu, a retired army general, told AFP he too was submitting nomination forms to run for president.
A three-time presidential election challenger and a former personal doctor to Museveni, Besigye made his last bid for Uganda’s top job in 2011.
Museveni, aged 70 and the east African nation’s leader since 1986, has already been given the green light as the candidate for the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) by the party’s top body.
One of Besigye’s supporters was shot and wounded on Wednesday in scuffles with police.
After he lost elections in 2011, Besigye led repeated attempts at anti-government demonstrations, in which he was regularly arrested and held for a few hours before his release.
Sacked prime minister Amama Mbabazi last month said he too would challenge his former close ally Museveni, sparking criticism from the government, who point out that many of political failings he speaks of happened when he was the ruling NRM party secretary-general.