Politics

RUSSIA – UKRAINE TENSION: WHY BOBI WINE SIDES WITH UKRAINE

By UG Reports

KAMPALA: Opposition National Unity Platform (NUP) President Robert Kyagulanyi has lauded Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky for rising to the moment and standing boldly to oppose the Russian invasion despite his inexperience in politics.

Kyagulanyi, also revealed that he supports Ukraine and he is praying that the Ukrainian people triumph and emerge victors in the ongoing war to defend their country against the invasion orchestrated by Russia’s president Valdmir Putin.

“Some people often ask us which side we stand on regarding international politics. Our answer is simple- we stand with justice, human rights and good. We stand with the truth! We stand with oppressed people all over the world, because we know what oppression feels like.” Bobi Wine posted on his Twitter account on Wednesday.

President Volodymyr Zelensky, a comedian who had no experience of politics when elected less than three years ago, has suddenly emerged as a convincing war leader rallying the nation with his addresses and video selfies and given voice to Ukrainian anger and defiance of Russian aggression.

Zelensky’s pronouncements have revealed a side that many critics – including a large chunk of the intelligentsia – had not seen coming.

A musician-turned politician, Bobi Wine ran for presidency in Uganda last year but did not win. In a post which was later deleted from his Twitter account, Bobi praised Volodomyr Zelensky for the bravery and “courage demonstrated in the face of a tyrant” (Putin).

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In a post alongside the photograph of Zelensky, Bobi noted “a former comedian has proved to the whole world that it is’t about experience” but the courage and support of the people, to lead a country.

Bobi Wine also took a swipe at President Yoweri Museveni and UPDF Commander of Land Forces Gen Muhoozi Keinerugaba accusing them for siding with tyrants in support of the Russian War against Ukraine.

“As the world unites in condemnation of the Ukrainian invasion, Museveni and his son are the few tyrants in support of the war. Not surprised. Nothing better to expect from a man who finds pleasure in torture and murder of unarmed civilians including women and children!” Kyagulanyi posted.

While President Museveni has not publicly pronounced himself on the ongoing war in Ukraine, his son Gen Muhoozi Keinerugaba has expressed support for Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

On February 28, through his personal Twitter account @mkainerugaba, Gen Muhoozi Keinerugaba wrote;

“Also, as far as Russia’s ‘Special Operation’ in Ukraine is involved, I have learnt that you can never put anything beyond brothers! They will always surprise you. I remember between 1990-94 we expected a war between African and European in South Africa but it never happened!”

“The majority of mankind (that are non-white) support Russia’s stand in Ukraine. Putin is absolutely right! When the USSR parked nuclear armed missiles in Cuba in 1962 the West was ready to blow up the world over it. Now when NATO does the same they expect Russia to do differently?” He posted in another post.

Aged 44, Zelensky’s arrival on the political scene was a case of life imitating art. His most celebrated role as a comic actor was in the TV series, Servant of the People, in which he played a school teacher catapulted into the presidency after a student posted a viral video of him ranting about corruption in politics.

His candidacy in the 2019 presidential election was initially seen by some as a joke – his political party is called the Servant of the People party. But he went on to win with 73% of the vote, promising to fight corruption and bring peace in the east of the country.

His grip on power is now more threatened than ever as Russian forces are reported to be advancing with more resolute towards the two major cities of Karkiv and Kyiv with aerial bombardments.

Zelensky released a short video address early Friday local time, appearing unshaven and in a T-shirt, in which he said that despite misinformation to the contrary, he was still in the capital, Kyiv.

“I remain in the capital, I remain with my people,” Zelensky said. “During the day I held dozens of international talks, directly managing our country. And I will stay in the capital. My family is also in Ukraine. My children are also in Ukraine. My family are not traitors. They are citizens of Ukraine. But I have no right to say where they are now.”

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