News Brief

Bobi Wine Has Been Arrested Following Attacks From Ugandan Security Forces

The Ugandan musician and opposition lawmaker's driver was shot dead after a clash with Ugandan forces.

UPDATE 8/14/18, 1:04 PM EST: Bobi Wine has been taken into police custody, along with three other MPs, following an incident with police forces in the north-western town of Aura that left his driver dead. "We arrested Bobi Wine and others this morning and he is in our custody," said Emilian Kayima, Uganda's police spokesman.

According to BBC Africa, Kayima claims that Museveni's car was pelted with stones during the campaign rally, which led to the use of force by police officials who intervened by "using teargas and shooting."

Wine's supporters believe, instead, that he was being targeted by the police, as the lawmaker has been harassed by Museveni's officials on several occasions.


Read on for previous updates:

The whereabouts of popular Ugandan musician, lawmaker, and outspoken critic of President Museveni's administration Robert Kyagulanyi, better known as Bobi Wine, remain unknown following a fatal run-in with Ugandan security forces, in which his driver was killed.

The musician was attending a by-election rally in Arua on Monday, in support of an opposition politician, when his driver was shot dead outside of their hotel by security forces. While early reports stated that the musician had been arrested, the Ugandan police force later stated that they were yet to make an arrest.

The artist shared a photo of his slain driver on Twitter, stating that he believed he was the intended target of the attack. "Police has shot my driver dead thinking they've shot at me," he wrote.

According to music executive and friend of Wine, Rikki Stein, the artist is currently inside the barricaded hotel in Aura, though Stein has been unable to reach him by phone.

Wine has been the target of attacks by the government since he came into office last year. The 35-year-old ran as an independent candidate, and drew massive support from his constituency. "The big issue that came up, was the proposal from the ruling party to lift the constitutional clause that limits anyone older than 75 years to run again," Kalundi Serumaga, a banned broadcast journalist, former director of the Ugandan Culture Center and self-described "campaigner for native rights," tells OkayAfrica.

Wine along with fellow MPs were physically dragged from parliament following a filibuster against the proposed lift. Hand grenades have been thrown at his house, and his concerts and speeches have been blocked on several occasions, including a show last month during the 25th celebration of the King of the Bugandans.

Last month, Wine led a protest against the newly implemented social media tax imposed on Ugandan citizens. Demonstrators were also met with bullets and teargas on that occasion.

Wine presents a challenge to the current government because "he represents the rising generation," says Serumaga, who is critical of the government's response to Wine's efforts. "They need to attempt to understand why the youthful population places their hope in someone like him. Understand why young people support him. Silencing him is not useful."

Museveni, 74, has a history of cracking down on the opposition. Ahead of his inauguration in 2016—which marked his fifth term in office—the leader had members of the opposition party arrested and placed several others on house arrest.

News
Photo: Alvin Ukpeh.

The Year Is 2020 & the Future of Nigeria Is the Youth

We discuss the strength in resolve of Nigeria's youth, their use of social media to speak up, and the young digital platforms circumventing the legacy media propaganda machine. We also get first-hand accounts from young creatives on being extorted by SARS and why they believe the protests are so important.

In the midst of a pandemic-rife 2020, the voices of African youth have gotten louder in demand for a better present and future. From structural reforms, women's rights, LGBTQ rights, and derelict states of public service, the youths have amplified their voices via the internet and social media, to cohesively express grievances that would hitherto have been quelled at a whisper.

Nigerian youth have used the internet and social media to create and sustain a loud voice for themselves. The expression of frustration and the calls for change may have started online, but it's having a profound effect on the lives of every Nigerian with each passing day. What started as the twitter hashtag #EndSARS has grown into a nationwide youth revolution led by the people.

Even after the government supposedly disbanded the SARS (Special Anti-Robbery Squad) unit on the 10th of October, young Nigerians have not relented in their demands for better policing. The lack of trust for government promises has kept the youth protesting on the streets and online.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.

Interview: 808x On Crafting Different Sounds For the Diverse Innanetwav Roster

808x, the in-house producer for South Africa's popular hip-hop collective/label Innanetwav, breaks down his working process with artists and the importance of energy.