The leader of Uganda’s main opposition party, Bobi Wine, claimed on October 5, 2023, that he was under house arrest after being detained by security agents upon his return from a foreign tour.
The leader of Uganda’s main opposition party was apprehended on his return from South Africa at Entebbe International Airport on Thursday morning. A photo posted on social media appears to show Bobi Wine surrounded by two men, “agents of the regime,” according to his party, the National Unity Platform (NUP). Several of his supporters had planned to greet him en masse and accompany him to his home.
Heavy Police Presence
Since yesterday, a heavy police presence has been deployed around Entebbe Airport to prevent “criminal acts.” The police had warned against participating in any procession to welcome the former singer, deeming such gatherings “illegal.” According to Bobi Wine’s party, 300 of his supporters were arrested overnight. So, there was no public jubilation to welcome him, but armored vehicles and security agents instead.
The welcome lasted only a few minutes before Bobi Wine was detained, forcibly placed in a car, and escorted to his home, where he claims to have been placed under house arrest.
David Lewis Rubongoya, the Secretary-General of the NUP, denounces the actions of the security forces. He believes that Bobi Wine’s popularity poses a threat to the regime of President Yoweri Museveni. “Before he went to Canada, then to the United States and South Africa, we conducted a national tour during which hundreds of thousands of people came out to support him, and I think that scared the regime,” he told Christina Okello. “Yesterday, Bobi Wine met with several leaders of African opposition and other political forces seeking democracy. That’s why he traveled abroad, and he announced that upon his return, we would resume our activities, which may explain why he was treated this way.”
Last month, the police had already suspended Bobi Wine’s nationwide tour ahead of the 2026 elections, citing “public disorder.”