The Minister for Internal Affairs, Gen Abubakar Jeje Odongo has clarified on the reasons as to why police has continuously stopped Kyadondo East MP, Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine from performing on music events, saying that the singer attends concerts where he is not invited.
The Minister’s submissions on the floor of Parliament comes as a response to the concerns that were raised by Bobi Wine over the ban on several of his concerts and music performances around the country.
The legislator and musician said that more than ten concerts have within a period of three months been banned by Police as well as an incident where he was stopped from attending a church mass.
In his statement to the House on Thursday, the Minister for Internal Affairs noted that Kyagulanyi has on several occasions faulted the Public Order and Management Act and has gone on to mix politics with music.
The General said that on several occasions where the musician and promoters have complied with the guidelines, the concerts have been left to go on unhindered.
“The Uganda Police Force is mandated by law to protect life and property, prevent and detect crime and maintain law and order among other functions. It is not wise to look at the economic benefits alone during these concerts without taking care of public security and safety,” Odongo said.
He said that Police shared guidelines with the public which were publicized through all media platforms and were as well shared with Bobi Wine on December 5th, 2018 to which he agreed to comply.
“A case in point is Busabala Kyarenga concert organized by EMMA Promotions and Hon. Kyagulanyi Ssentamu Robert performed. However, those that do not comply with the guidelines thereby compromising the health, safety and security of everyone are further advised on the importance of public security and safety.”
“Government shall not simply look on and abdicate its duty of protecting people and their property.”
Odongo noted that it is regrettable that Bobi Wine hijacked the recent concert in Jinja where he had not been on the list of performers for his own interests.
“I would like to draw your attention to the music concert organized in Jinja on Saturday December 15th, 2018. The promoters and organizers had several planning meetings with security to secure the event,” he said.
He said that the routes were properly planned and secured to regulate traffic flow, stewards were put in place and police officers were deployed at the venue and along the roads.
“Regrettably, that evening, the Kyagulanyi who was not on the list of performers acted contrary to the set guidelines, flouting traffic laws, held a procession along Iganga road in Jinja town thereby disrupting traffic flow and causing disorder and disharmony.”
The Minister’s submission was defended by the Minister of State for Youth, Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi who noted that musicians should learn to avoid mixing politics and music.
This was however resisted by several members of the House as well as the Speaker who noted that it is should be understand that it is always hard to separate politics from music since one suppliments the other.
However, on the issue of hijacking concerts, Kyagulanyi informed the House that it is not true that he was never invited for the Jinja concert since he was contracted as well as paid to perform during the concert that was later stopped by Police.
In her ruling, Kadaga warned government against the continued sabotage of economic rights of Ugandans many of whom earn a living through the music shows and concerts.
She asked Police to allow the event organisers and promoters to carry on their planned festive season events to which Odongo agreed that it will be done according to the law.
“Entertainers will be allowed to do their thing according to the law,” Odongo promised.