By Ian Neubauer
A man was killed by a drunken mob in a Ugandan bar last week after he refused to extinguish his cigarette.
The unidentified victim was strangled in the Soni-Ogwang bar in the country’s east while smoking and drinking a popular local gin called waragi, the BBC reported. It is believed he swore at patrons when urged to stop smoking and was killed in the subsequent affray.
Public reaction has swung both ways in the impoverished East African nation, where vigilantism is often seen as the only viable means of justice.
"He was told to move away and smoke outside and he refused," said a man who thought the killing was justified.
"These people who killed made a mistake because the law does not say kill a smoker,” said another.
A number of suspects have been rounded up by police and are expected to face charges.
It is the first reported killing of a smoker in a bar since smoking bans began to surface around the world in recent years.
Smoking in restaurants, schools and bars in Uganda was banned in 2004. Offenders are fined between $10 and $50.
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