The light Magazine

Bobi Wine facing looming arrest over social media tax

Written by: Administrator
Wednesday, July 11th, 2018, 9:42

Ugandan Police have today told local media that legislator Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine actions are illegal and it was a matter of time to take him to the courts of law.


This morning Bobi Wine, who has been critical of the Kampala regime for condoning a social media tax that sparked off countrywide anger, led unsuccessful demonstration protesting this law in the capital Kampala.


The Police have arrested some suspects though the MP narrowly avoided the arrest by sneaking into the Parliamentary building.


Local media has quoted Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson, Luke Owoyesigire as saying that Bobi Wine will have to explain his actions which he described as “illegal”


Recently President Yoweri Museveni said that social media chatting is a luxury for people who want to enjoy themselves or malice others and accused social media users of squandering government revenues to foreign firms.   


“As to social- media tax, all the moral reasons are in favour of that tax. The social - media users have no right to squander the dollars I earn from my coffee , my milk et cetera by endlessly donating money to foreign telephone Companies through chatting or even lying and, then, they are allergic to even a modest contribution to their country whose collective wealth they are misusing,” said President Museveni in a statement he posted through twitter.


“Mobile money transfer is, of course, different from the social media chatting. Social media chatting is a luxury by those who are enjoying themselves or those who are malicious,” he added.  


Last May Ugandan legislators passed new taxes which include UGSH200 (approx. $0.05) tax per day in order to access various online services. This law attracted widespread criticism from the Ugandans and the Amnesty International.


The Human Rights watch called on the Kampala regime to recall the new tax on social media stressing it robbed many Ugandans of their “right to freedom of expression, with a chilling effect on other human rights".


"This is a clear attempt to silence dissent, in the guise of raising government revenues," Amnesty said.


The platforms affected include Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, WhatsApp, Google Hangouts, , Skype, Yahoo Messenger et cetera.


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