Ugandans online have reacted with dismay as the police apply what look like double standards to Bobi Wine and another popular musicians holding Boxing Day concerts in the capital, Kampala. While Bobi Wine, who is a musician and a legislator, is still struggling to secure permission to stage concerts and perform his music, another artist Bebe Cool, has received an endorsement for his show from president Yoweri Museveni himself. Bobi Wine, who has been a fierce critic of Museveni’s government since he joined the parliament in 2017, has been prevented from staging concerts, by the police who claim he has failed to met certain requirements. “We shall be at Busabala beach to disperse revellers because we shall be protecting them. As far as I’m concerned, this concert wasn’t cleared because the first things weren’t done,” police spokesperson Emilian Kayima said on Wednesday. The police claim Bobi Wine did not formally apply for permission to stage a concert today, at the One Love Beach Busabala on the outskirts of Kampala. The property is owned by the 36-year-old lawmaker. Bobi Wine had earlier taken to social media, where he said police had raided the property, stopped ongoing preparations and arrested some of the staff.
Uganda’s parliament last week ordered the security forces to stop blocking Bobi Wine’s concert, saying the actions of the police were unconstitutional. Museveni endorses Bebe Cool Meanwhile, a video has been shared online of Museveni endorsing a concert by Bebe Cool, who occassionally criticises Bobi Wine, and is a vocal supporter of the ruling party. In the video, Museveni urges Bebe Cool to do music that advances the development of Africa, and wishes concert goers ‘a good time’. ‘‘I have heard that my son Bebe Cool has a concert on 26 December. His concert is dubbed ‘Heart of Gold’. I wish him all the best and hope he sings music that advances Africa’s development,’‘ Museveni says, using the local Luganda language.
At the height of protests demanding the release of Bobi Wine in September this year, fans attacked Bebe Cool at a concert, as public anger against Museveni and his supporters peaked. READ MORE: Ugandans debate radicalisation after Bobi Wine’s music rival, Bebe Cool is attacked at concert