Bobi Wine is a free man but only within his home – Internal Affairs Minister

Bobi Wine is a free man but only within his home - Internal Affairs Minister
Kyadondo East Member of Parliament Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu commonly known as Bobi Wine at his home in Magere North of Kampala, Uganda. COURTESY PHOTO/REUTERS/Matthias Mugisha

Kyadondo East Member of Parliament Robert Kyagulanyi popularly known as Bobi Wine is not free to leave his home in Magere at the moment, the Minister of State for Internal Affairs Mario Obiga Kania has said.

Kyagulanyi has been under house arrest since Easter Monday, and Minister Obiga yesterday told Parliament that he will remain so because the state suspects that he has committed a crime.

“Hon Kyagulanyi is a free man within the confines of his home. He is not being detained at his home as a politician, he is being detained as Robert Kyagulanyi whom the police say has committed some crimes,” said Obiga.

The Minister said Kyagulanyi is expected to report to the Crime Intelligence and Investigations Department (CIID) headquarters in Kibuli this week to make a statement about his alleged crimes. Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah however told Obiga that even in the event that Kyagulanyi committed a crime, his home is a not a designated detention centre and the state ought to follow the law while enforcing the same.

Kyagulanyi was arrested on Monday and forcefully driven back into his home after attempting to access his One Love Beach in Busabala. Security has since laid a siege to his home with the legislator’s movements and visitors restricted.

On Sunday, police cancelled his ‘Kyarenga Extra’ show at his One Love Beach, arguing that he failed to guarantee the security of the expected revellers.

READ: Security quells Bobi Wine protests, deploy near his recording studio

Police director of operations Asuman Mugenyi argued that Kyagulanyi’s previous music concerts held at One Love Beach fell short of security guidelines. Mugenyi further claimed that Bobi Wine’s shows have severally turned into a public nuisance, violated traffic rules and regulations and caused other misconducts, which don’t only breach the law, but endanger the lives of other people who are not even part of his music events.

COURT PETITION

Kampala Lord Mayor, Erias Lukwago says he will file an application challenging police’s continued blocking of Kyagulanyi’s music shows. According to Kyagulanyi, police has blocked or cancelled at least 124 shows where he was headlined to perform in the last few months.

Lukwago on Wednesday received a file of documents for the cancelled ‘Kyarenga Extra’ show from events manager Andrew Mukasa alias Bajjo. The show was scheduled for Easter Monday, however it was blocked by police over security.

The cancellation triggered confrontation between police and Kyagulanyi’s supporters. Lukwago says he will set up a legal team to argue out the application basing on enforcement of rights and freedoms by courts as premised in Article 50 of the Constitution. He says the case is meant to ensure Kyagulanyi and the entire Fire Base Crew return on stage to perform because it is their constitutional right.

DIASPORA CONCERNS

Meanwhile, the Common League of the Uganda Diaspora (CLOUD) has also called on government to stop blocking Kyagulanyi’s music concerts. Martin Byakuleka, the president CLOUD says whereas the reason given by police for stopping Kyagulanyi’s concert was lack of personnel to offer security to the revelers, the same police force deployed scores of personnel to block the music show.

He says that Kyagulanyi is being treated unfairly by the state since he is seen as a threat to the leadership of the country.

“This was obviously a masked regime effort to economically frustrate Hon. Kyagulanyi, especially after he expressed his interest to stand for the country’s presidency,” the statement reads.

Byakuleka says government has arrested and frustrated other opposition individuals in the same manner that Bobi Wine is being frustrated especially those who have showed interest to contest for the presidency.

– URN