Ugandan Musician-Lawmaker Charged With Treason

Bobi Wine

Bobi Wine

Government has on Thursday morning dropped charges against Bobi Wine.

Ugandan Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine who is now being held at Makindye Military Prison refused to let his children see him in the bad state he is in but opted to communicate via two emotional letters even as he fights for his freedom.

Security forces in recent days have violently put down street protests by Ugandans demanding the release of Mr Ssentamu, who is charged with illegal possession of firearms. The charge against him was reduced to the illegal possession of arms and he is now detained in an army barracks with limited access by his family and lawyers until a further appearance before a military tribunal this coming Thursday.

He has been in detention since August 15 and needs urgent medical care, his lawyers argued.

"We pledge to remain vigilant ... and to use our voices ... to press for his immediate and unconditional release, and for an end to this and other acts of political repression and violence in Uganda".

Friends and relatives told the Guardian that Kyagulanyi, who campaigns under the slogan "people power", was left unable to stand after being beaten in detention.

Kyagulanyi was arrested last week along with four other lawmakers in connection with an incident involving an attack on President Yoweri Museveni's motorcade in the northwestern town of Arua.

Jaguar stood to demand that the house discuss the matter of Bobi's detention and alleged torture.

"We pledge", the letter later continues, "to remain vigilant about his ongoing detention and to use our voices and networks at the local, regional and worldwide levels to raise awareness about his case, to press for his immediate and unconditional release, and for an end to this and other acts of political repression and violence in Uganda". However, the Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC) team that visited Bobi Wine confirmed the accounts.

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The authorities say weapons and ammunition were found in Bobi Wine's hotel room.

The charges are widely viewed as politically motivated and aimed at silencing a prominent critic of the president.

He is a successful Afrobeats star, known for a repertoire of catchy tunes that touch on poverty and social justice issues.

He shifted gears in 2017, cutting off his dreads and donning sharp suits as he turned his eye to Ugandan politics.

In a country where more than three-quarters of the population is under the age of 30, Bobi Wine might have demographics on his side.

The deputy speaker says Kyagulanyi and Zaake are in awful pain because of too much beating.

He might also have a knack of being kingmaker. He entered parliament past year.

Clearly, Bobi Wine has sparked a movement and rallying cry against the status quo in Uganda. A sight that emphasizes reports that he had been brutalized whiles in custody of the security forces - police and military.

Yes. His popularity could make him President Museveni's biggest challenger in the 2021 elections.

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