pope

Francis arrived in Uganda after three days in neighbouring Kenya, where vast crowds turned out to an open air mass, and where the pontiff lashed out at corruption and wealthy minorities who hoard resources at the expense of the poor.

President Yoweri Museveni has said he is “honoured to host Pope Francis,” saying the pontiff’s “compassion for the poor and his frankness of spirit is an encouragement for all of us.”

Large crowds gathered in Entebbe — some 30 kilometres (20 miles) south of the capital Kampala — where Francis met Museveni at the presidential palace later on Friday.

Crowds gathered along the roads, while street lights were draped with black, yellow and red banners, the colours of the national flag.

“This is my third pope but it can’t be boring, we are blessed!” said 55-year-old Agnes Mubuya, sitting on a plastic chair on the pavement outside the printer where she works in Entebbe.

Wearing a yellow dress, she had a laminated badge reading “Welcome Pope Francis to Uganda” pinned to the chest.

Police and soldiers, all armed with assault rifles or batons, lined the road and military pickups raced up and down the street.

“This is my third pope,” said 60-year old Henry Mutambo, a Protestant, dressed in slacks and a loose, untucked shirt, who stood waiting on the grass verge close to the presidential palace.

“This latest pope, Francis, he cares for all the people, the whole universe, regardless of political or religious affiliation.”

Agencies

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