KAMPALA — A number of students at Makerere University have fought running battles with military on Thursday evening demanding removal of an army camp from the campus and an apology from the army for beating up students.
Unknown number of students especially residents of Lumumba hall have been injured in the evening confrontations in which army fired rubber bullets, teargas in their rooms and repeated baton charges.
Students pelted police with stones and bricks in retaliation.
Some on-duty journalists of different dailies have also been injured during the clashes while other were ordered to vacate the university premises.
Police and army vehicles including water cannons are patrolling the campus streets at the time, firing tear gas canisters.
Students took positions inside halls including Africa Hall, Lumumba Hall, Mitchell Hall, Nkrumah Hall, and other places and pelted police with stones and brickbats.
During the day, student put tires and other things on fire at places to save themselves from the tear gas.
The demonstrators burnt flammable items like chairs and tables.
The army beat up and arrested Lumumba chairman.
Female students took part in processions inside the dormitories protesting the police action.
Apparently, all the entrances to the campus have been sealed off as the army take charge of affairs.
Police and UPDF soldiers have so far arrested 47 students of Makerere University, including the Guild President, as the protest against the 15 percent tuition fees increment policy continues.
The arrests have been made since Tuesday when female students started the demonstration over the 15 percent cumulative tuition increment approved last year by the University council.
Those arrested and detained at Wandegeya Police Station include the guild president Julius Kateregga.
The vice Guild President Ms Judith Nalukwago who had gone to visit the detained students alongside a team of guild representatives were Thursday blocked from accessing them.
Meanwhile the Leader of the Opposition in Parliament, Betty Aol Ocan has condemned the way rioting Makerere University students are being handled by security forces, saying the harassment and intimidation being exercised unto students is unnecessary.
LoP Aol says she is hurt seeing the University sacrificing the wellbeing of students at the expense of tuition fees increment.
“I am a mother, I am teacher and I feel so bad about what is happening to students, the infrastructure I hear people commending the University Chancellor for is not meaningful to us without the welfare of students” said Aol.