U.S congressman, Bradley James Sherman has urged government of Uganda to immediately release Bobi Wine and other suspects who were recently arrested from Aria district.
He has also asked President Yoweri Museveni and government to undertake a thorough investigation into the killing of Bobi Wine’s driver, Yasin Kawuma.
Kawuma was shot dead under mysteriously on the evening of August 13 on the last day of campaigns in the Arua municipality by-election. Police initially pointed to a possibility that he was killed by a stray bullet at security quelled the chaos by supporters of Kassiano Wadri (one of the candidates in the election).
Sherman who represents California’s 30th congressional district in the U.S Congress recently wrote to Uganda’s Ambassador to USA, H.E Mull Ssebujja Katende condemning the trumped-up charges slapped against Bobi Wine and some other 32 people. He also implores Museveni and his government to respect human rights.
“I urge the government to immediately release Mr Kyagulanyi and his colleagues who are being held and tortured under false charges,” Bradley Sherman wrote in his August 23 letter.
Bobi Wine was released on bail today, Monday, along with 11 other suspects including two Members of Parliament. He could be seen using two crutches to support himself walk to the courtroom in Gulu, pointing to his bad state of health.
Sherman further calls for “a thorough investigation into the death of Mr Kawuma and the beating of Hon Francis Zaake” and for the release of all demonstrators that exercised their basic human right of assembly and freedom of expression.
Over 40 people were arrested by Police following the riots that broke out in Kampala protesting the detention of Bobi Wine last week. Several of the rioters and other people including journalists were rounded up, brutally beaten up by the military before they were arrested.
Sherman says that such situations must be contained while at the same time respecting fundamental rights.
“I call upon the government of Uganda and President Museveni to resolve such matters within the bounds of democracy and uphold those principles enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” the Congressman said.
He equally condemned the torture of Bobi Wine whom he suspects could be targeted due to his vocal opposition against the contentious amendment of the constitution that repealed the Presidential age limit, last year.
His appeal follows numerous other calls by rights campaigners in and outside Uganda who have in the recent days been pushing for the release of Bobi Wine and the others.
Some observers say that the recent events, particularly torture and brutality of MPs and civilians by security agents have damaged the image of Uganda internationally.