Trumped-up charges of illegal firearm possession were rightly dropped after Bobi Wine’s appearance in court in Gulu on Thursday. Bobi Wine, unable to even stand on his own due to injuries sustained while being brutalized by security forces in prison, enjoyed a few fleeting moments of freedom before being arrested again and charged with treason. The charge, punishable by death in Uganda, has been handed down for no reason other than the parliamentarian’s vocal activism and support for human and civil rights in the country.
After being freed and told that charges of unlawfully possessing firearms were dropped by the General Court Martial, Bobi Wine was told by his lawyer that he was under arrest again and he was put into a police vehicle with his wife to be taken to the Chief Magistrates Court.
The BBC’s Catherine Byaruhanga, who was at court in the northern town of Gulu, says he was unable to stand by himself and there were moments when he was visibly in pain.
He was remanded in custody until 30 August, when he is due back in court.
The arrests have raised tension across the country and sparked protests. Police have sealed off the homes of a number of opposition politicians, and high-profile opposition figure Kizza Besigye has been arrested in the capital Kampala.