Background: 18 November 2020, seven protesters were killed by police and dozens were injured in protests that broke out across Uganda, over the arrest of popular musician and presidential candidate Bobi Wine. Bobi Wine, real name Robert Kyagulanyi is a former rapper who is running against President Yoweri Museveni. President Yoweri has ruled the country for 37 years now and is the only remaining dictator in the East African region.
Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, who is better known by his stage name Bobi Wine, is a former musician/rapper who took Ugandan politics by storm after winning a parliamentary seat in Kyadondo East by a landslide in 2017. The following year, the 38-year-old announced he would challenge the country’s longest serving leader, Yoweri Museveni, in the election slated for January 2021.
In just two years, Wine has grown to become Museveni’s biggest challenger. Many of his young supporters have said they are drawn to the scathing and persistent critique of Museveni in several of Wine’s original songs.
Museveni came to power in 1986 after overthrowing two dictators. He was regarded as a freedom fighter and was praised for restoring stability in the country and encouraging economic growth. But he has been known to maintain a firm grip on power through repression and by silencing his opposition
In one such song about Museveni, Wine sings, “Freedom fighters become dictators. They look upon the youth and say we’re destructors.”
Museveni, who initially dismissed Wine as a “hooligan” from the “ghettos” is now using force and violence against his young opponent.
The outrage poured against Museveni back in 2017 when Ugandan lawmakers amended the constitution to allow Museveni to rule for life.
Bobi Wine has garnered significant support among Uganda’s urban youth. Wine said. “My own prediction is if President Museveni rigs the election right now the people of Uganda will rise up against him.”