Bobi Wine won’t stand down. That’s the message that resonated with the audience at the National Press Club during yesterday’s press conference. Although he’s in the United States for medical treatment, the Ugandan MP who’s suffered tremendous abuse by the State is determined to return home and continue his work.
“I want to go home, I still want to continue to call upon all Ugandans to stand up for what they believe in,” said the reggae star, who entered parliament as an independent MP last year and was arrested last month after some of his supporters allegedly stoned President Yoweri Museveni’s car.
“There is a treason charge against me and I believe many more charges will come,” he told AFP in Washington. “I know I could go to prison, I still could be hanged, but also know I could be illegally assassinated. My driver was shot and killed while sitting in the same spot I’d been sitting just a few seconds before. I know everything is possible in Uganda.”
Kyagulanyi has become a lightning rod for opposition sentiment against Musaveni, the 74-year-old president who has ruled the country since 1986. After his arrest, police and soldiers violently put down protests against his treatment.
“I ask the US to stand with the oppressed, by stopping to facilitate the brutality,” said the singer, wearing his trademark red beret and walking with a crutch. “The gun that shot my driver is an American gun. The forces of oppression are mainly funded by the USA.”
His lawyer Robert Amsterdam also called on the US administration to “immediately” suspend military funding to Uganda and “launch immediately an investigation into the use of US equipment to torture Ugandan citizens.”