What Bobi Wine told supporters outside his home in Kampala
Bobi Wine has vowed to continue what he calls a fight for freedom for millions of oppressed fellow citizens, after returning to his country from the United States.
The Ugandan pop star turned opposition politician, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, appeared atop a car outside his home in Kampala to address hundreds of cheering supporters.
“I am resuming immediately … I am on the mission already, I am on the fight for freedom and liberty already,” he said, surrounded by throngs of people.
Leaning on a cane, he said his “desire for liberty” was as strong as “the desire of the millions and millions of people in Uganda to be free.” Ugandans, he said, were “slaves in our own country”.
"We must get our freedom or die trying" – Ugandan pop star-turned-MP Bobi Wine speaks to reporters after his return from the US.
— BBC News Africa (@BBCAfrica) September 20, 2018
His supporters had earlier in the day defied a heavy security presence and gathered at his residence to welcome him, but once he arrived by police escort, security forces did not attempt to stop crowds from gathering at his home.
Many of his supporters wore red t-shirts and hats. The colour has come to be associated with his “People Power” movement, and demonstrators at Ugandan embassies in London, Nairobi and elsewhere have donned the same colour during protests.
Police had on Wednesday banned rallies to welcome Bobi Wine home and said they would escort him to his home. The legal basis for the escort was unclear.
Ahead of his arrival, security forces had deployed around the airport and the highway linking it to Kampala to prevent supporters from greeting him.
Armoured personnel carriers and police vehicles lined the route and journalists were prevented from travelling to the airport to cover the arrival of Bobi Wine.
Said goodbye to Uganda after a 5-hour detention for speaking to Bobi Wine. Safely back on Kenyan soil. pic.twitter.com/qzhfocMZfn
— FERDINAND OMONDI (@FerdyOmondi) September 20, 2018
His message – that young Ugandans need a dynamic new head of state to tackle the myriad problems they face – has electrified citizens who say they are fed up with corruption, unemployment, and state repression of dissent.
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