Bobi Wine,today addressed the press at his home in Magere, Wakiso district, four days after his return from the United States for treatment of the injuries he allegedly suffered during his arrest and detention over the Arua violence.
The MP today (Monday) directly addressed President Yoweri Museveni, calling him out for his condescending tone to the MP’s opinions, and little or no condemnation of his armed officers who were implicated in the torture of unarmed civilians following the election violence in Arua last month.
The MP asked President Museveni about how he felt about the “people that were tortured, killed and framed” during the weeks of political turmoil in Arua, Gulu Mityana and other parts of the country.
“What does it feel when you treat your people like this Mr President?” the MP asked. “How does it feel having your boots on the necks of your people?”
Bobi Wine, citing President Museveni’s common reference of most Ugandans as his grandchildren, said that this is not how grandparents behave.
“Grandparents are people that we run to for protection, for love, and for care.”
“Just yesterday when my grandmother visited me… she carried me on her lap; she is very old and weak but she patted me and hugged and prayed with me. She tried to carry me yet she can’t.”
“Mr President I think that that is how grandparents should treat their grandchildren. They shouldn’t be brutalizing and framing them every time they have a different opinion. We want to learn from you Mr President.”
The 36 year old MP said he was “very disappointed” by the President’s non-condemnation of the armed forces involved in the violence which has been called out at multiple international levels.
While Bobi Wine says he expected the presidentto call the errant soldiers to order, he was “disappointed when (Museveni) ‘decided to pat them on the back for a job well done.’”
“That was very disappointing very, very disappointing.”
President Yoweri Museveni in one of his televised national addresses about the political violence recently, admitted that some armed officers where still stuck to the practice of torturing suspects.
This practice, he said, is outdated and ineffective in extraction of accurate information.
Museveni said he had a year ago formally advised the heads of armed forces against the use of torture.
He said however, that he would not allow civilian Ugandans including members of parliament to chastise the members of the armed forces, saying that this would be handled by himself as the Commander in Chief.
The UPDF recently revealed that its members who took part in beating up of unarmed civilians are being investigated and that they would soon be arraigned and tried publicly in courts of law.
Meanwhile, Hon Bobi Wine in his address condemned what he called government’s deliberate efforts to demonize the concept of People Power.
People Power, he said, is not about himself as Bobi Wine, but “an idea that is premised on the fact that power belongs to the people. Not some power but all power.”
“We have been subjected to ridicule, and reduced to less than citizens, so we decided to invoke Article 1 of our constitution, which is the first step to realize who we are.
President Museveni however, says People Power has always been reflected in the enormous support that the NRM government has.
While addressing press at State House in Entebbe, Museveni said, “About People’s power, I think those people are not informed. People’s power was recently demonstrated in the LC 1 elections.”
“Those millions that turned out in the 54000 villages; that was massive people’s power. They voted openly, not hiding behind papers. If you are in doubt another (election) chance will come.”