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Nigerian Lawyer Drags Ugandan Government To The UN

Bobi Wine House Arrest: Nigerian Lawyer Drags Ugandan Government To The UN

A human rights lawyer and activist from Nigerian, Femi Falana, has filed a complaint at the United Nations (UN) against the government of Uganda over the detention of Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine.

Bobi Wine was President Museveni’s closest challenger in the recent presidential elections. The government has however kept Bobi under house arrest since election day, Thursday, January 14. This was shortly after he cast his vote.

A statement dated Monday, January 18, indicates Lawyer Falani sought an opinion from the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (UN-WGAD). This organisation is an affiliate of the UN. He made the submission due to the continued detention of Bobi Wine without any charges. He says this is against the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda.

“Mr. Wine and his wife are being illegally detained for days without any criminal charges preferred against him. I am therefore seeking an opinion from the Working Group finding the house arrest and continuing detention of Mr. Wine and his wife to be arbitrary and in violation of Uganda’s Constitution of 1995,” reads the statement in part.

Falana further notes that the Ugandan government denied the singer access to his lawyers. This is apparently in a bid to prevent him from filing a petition challenging Museveni’s win. The lawyer in his letter, therefore, demands the immediate release of the 38-year-old politician. He urges the Working Body to send an allegation letter to the Government of Uganda questioning the legal basis of his arrest.

Attempts to restock food supplies

The Kyadondo East constituency MP and presidential candidate said his family is on the verge of starving after running out of food supplies. The police and military have surrounded his house to prevent him from leaving.

“It’s now four days since the military surrounded our home and placed my wife and I under house arrest. We have run out of food supplies and when my wife tried to pick food from the garden yesterday, she was blocked and assaulted by the soldiers staged in our compound,” he said.

The blocking of the US ambassador

The army also blocked the United States envoy to Uganda Natalie Brown from visiting Bobi Wine. Amb. Brown said she wanted to ensure Bobi was safe. Unfortunately, the Ugandan military blocked her from  accessing his house located in the outskirts of Kampala.

After Amb. Brown’s attempt to visit Bobi Wine, the Ugandan government, in turn, accused the US of trying to subvert President Yoweri Museveni’s re-election.

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