10 January 2019

Uganda: Bobi Wine Named Among 100 Global Thinkers

Photo: The Observer
Bobi Wine.

The United States Foreign Policy magazine has named Kyadondo East member of parliament, Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine among the top 100 foreign policy global thinkers of 2018.

Bobi Wine features alongside leaders such as the International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde and New Zealand's 38-year-old Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Bobi Wine whose phenomenon rise in the political arena continues to attract global attention was listed in the Arts and Activism section of Foreign Policy magazine. The magazine described Bobi Wine as "Uganda's firebrand singer-turned-politician (who) grew up poor in Kampala."

According to the magazine, Bobi Wine has been recognised for representing youth in parliament. The magazine has been running the special edition for 9 years since 2009 and is split in 10 different categories.

"Bobi Wine, born Robert Kyagulanyi, has rallied Uganda's youth by arguing against a proposed social media tax and fighting for the dignity of the poor. Ugandan soldiers attempted to silence Wine in August 2018, first beating him brutally and then bringing him to trial for treason in a military court, although he is a civilian," reads the magazine.

"Wine recovered, picked up attention in the international media, and his "people power" campaign continues, undeterred."

In his response, Bobi Wine said in a tweet that he is humbled by the recognition.

"Am extremely honoured to be named amongst the Global Thinkers, 2019, humbled that the small things we do for our country & our people are appreciated by the world. Such recognition by the world only reaffirms to us that ours is not a wrong cause, encouraged to carry on."

The magazine says the full list of 100 global thinkers will be released on January 22, 2018.

"Until then, we'll be revealing names from each category every day."

The United Kingdom House of Commons on Tuesday held a debate on democracy in Uganda. The motion was tabled by Stockton South MP Dr Paul Williams in December last year. This follows last year's Arua by-election fracas in which several MPs were arrested and tortured for allegedly stoning the car of President Yoweri Museveni.

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