Bobi Wine launches new party

Ugandan activist Bobi Wine has launched a new political party ahead of a presidential election in which he hopes to be the face of a united opposition against the country’s long-time leader.

The popular singer and lawmaker, whose real name is Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, has led a political pressure group known as People Power, which has captured the imagination of many Ugandans with its calls for President Yoweri Museveni’s retirement.

Bobi Wine

He is calling his new party the National Unity Platform, with an umbrella as its emblem. He has been calling for a united opposition against Museveni, a U.S. ally on regional security who has led this East African country since taking power by force in 1986. The 75-year-old Museveni is increasingly accused of relying on the armed forces to stay in power.

Wine has been arrested or detained many times, including over a treason charge that he denies. With political rallies now banned, presidential aspirants play cat-and-mouse with security forces seeking to break up anti-government gatherings.

Uganda has not witnessed a peaceful transfer of power since independence from Britain in 1962.

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