Uganda’s pop star MP ‘taken away’ by security officers

KAMPALA, Uganda – Ugandan pop star turned opposition MP Robert Kyagulanyi was taken away by security officers upon arrival at the country’s international airport on Thursday, his wife Barbie said.

“After landing at Entebbe, security surrounded him and took him away. We are not sure where they are taking him,” she said.

Kyagulanyi, 36 and better known as singer Bobi Wine, had been seeking medical treatment in the United States. He says he was tortured in custody after being arrested last month.

The pop star turned opposition firebrand was charged with treason alongside more than 30 others after President Yoweri Museveni’s motorcade was stoned by opposition supporters.

His American lawyer, Robert Amsterdam, said on Twitter that his client had “again been unlawfully detained” upon arrival in Uganda. Uganda’s police chief, Martin Okoth Ochola, insisted that Kyagulanyi “is not under arrest”.

“What we have done is to escort him from Entebbe airport to his home,” he said

“We are under obligation to provide security and this is what we are doing.”

Since entering parliament last year Kyagulanyi has emerged as a leading critic of Museveni, a 74-year-old former rebel leader in charge since 1986. Security was tight with riot police and soldiers deployed at the airport and in the capital, Kampala, 40 kilometres (25 miles) away, after police outlawed any welcome processions or gatherings.