Presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine, has come under fire for sending his children out of the country just seven days to the January 14 presidential election, with a high ranking government official labeling him a “traitor.”
Bobi’s children left Entebbe Airport aboard Qatar Airways on Wednesday, January 6.
The singer-turned-politician said he was compelled to keep his children away to protect them from security services which have been harassing them.
Bobi further said attempts have been to harm his kids and that there was a plan to hold them hostage to force him out of the presidential race.
However, Foreign Affairs State Minister, Okello Oryem said Bobi’s decision was inexcusable.
“If President Museveni is the one who took his family out of the family or me, minister Okello Oryem took the family out of the country or somebody else took the family out of the country, then it would portray what the family is,” Oryem was quoted by URN as saying.
“But this shows that this guy has betrayed all his friends and those he claims to be standing for. He’s a traitor. He’s scared about his family, himself more than all those other people that have sacrificed for him,” said the Minister.
“There are people who have been on front lines to die for him, there are people who stood on the frontline to go to jail for him, there are people who have been on the frontline to suffer for him. By sneaking clandestinely his family out of the country without care or concern for families of those other people who are sacrificing for him. Those other families don’t live in fear?” said Oryem.
Bobi’s decision has since split public opinion with his supporters saying it was a step in the right direction, arguing that President Museveni also sent his children to Kenya and later Sweden as he planned to wage war against Milton Obote in 1980.
Museveni camp fires back
This attracted a fiery response from Museveni’s supporters who said his was an armed struggle against violent Amin and Obote regimes while Bobi Wine’s ‘struggle’ is a ‘democratic’ one.
They further said Bobi Wine is implicitly confirming many Ugandans’ suspicions that his so-called struggle is actually a plan to cause mayhem and violence in the country before, during and after the election.
One of the NRM supporters said, “Bobi will be thoroughly defeated on that front come 14th Jan. Even then, any violent plans will be defeated too. Uganda has the capability to secure its peace and continued stability. Bobi Wine cannot compare himself to Museveni, it is just one but many of his pathetic and futile attempts to do so!”
Government spokesperson Ofwono Opondo said “a presidential candidate taking his family to the U.S. falsely alleging political harm, could be an early indicator that candidate may seek refuge in an embassy after voting on polling day. I hope that you remember one Tindu Lissu somewhere nearby.”
Tindu Lissu, a Tanzanian opposition politician hid in German Embassy after the recent presidential election before fleeing to Belgium.
The Electoral Commission on January 6 officially flagged off the dispatch of the polling kits to all districts across the country in preparation for the January 14 general election.