Kampala – Uganda’s High Court on Monday ordered security forces to end their confinement of presidential election runner-up Bobi Wine.
Wine, whose real name is Kyagulanyi Ssentamu Robert, has been under house arrest at his home outside the capital, Kampala, since he returned from voting on January 14.
Sitting at the court’s Civil Division in Kampala, Justice Michael Elubu ruled in favour of a petition lodged by Wine’s lawyers asking for his release.
“The continued indefinite restriction and confinement of the applicant to his home is unlawful and his right to liberty has been infringed,” Elubu said.
“Having found that the restrictions are unlawful it is hereby ordered that they are lifted.”
The Ugandan government had argued that the restrictions on Wine’s movements were “preventative” measures for his own protection and to prevent protests against the election result, which Wine claims was rigged in favour of President Yoweri Museveni.
Wine maintains that he won the election and will continue to challenge the results.
“The revolution is going on and nothing, absolutely nothing, will stop us. The regime is desperate to close this chapter, to pretend that things have moved on. This is just the beginning. We are removing a dictator and we will not rest until we achieve this mission,” he said.
Speaking to the media, the Uganda Police Force say they will withdraw deployment from Bobi Wine’s home in Magere as per the High Court ruling issued on Monday. However, Police say they will maintain surveillance on the former presidential candidate by monitoring all his movements.
“We shall withdraw the deployment from Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi’s home as per the High Court ruling issued this morning. However, we shall maintain surveillance on his movements,” Police Spokesman, Fred Enanga said during a media brief.
Africa Tembelea has however learnt that security forces are yet to vacate the area around Wine’s home. This is not new as Ugandan security forces have in the past disregarded court orders to release individuals or have immediately re-arrested people freed by the courts.
“The High Court ruled this morning that my continued house arrest (11 days now) is illegal & unconstitutional,” Bobi Wine wrote on Twitter.
“Several hours later, the military still surrounds my home, blocking access to all! Perhaps (as always) waiting for Gen. Museveni’s orders on the next course of action.”
– Election Results –
Yoweri Kaguta Museveni was announced the winner January 16th, with the Uganda Electoral Commission saying he polled 5.85 million votes equivalent to 58.64 percent, while his closest challenger Bobi Wine of National Unity Platform (NUP) polled 3.48 million votes equivalent 34.83 percent.