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Music promoters, Event managers petition Kadaga over Bobi Wine’s concerts

Ugandan musician turned politician Robert Kyagulanyi, (Bobi Wine) sings on a stage in Busabala, suburb of Kampala, Uganda, on November 10, 2018.(Photo by Isaac KASAMANI / AFP)

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Music promoters and events managers have petitioned the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga to intervene in the suspended music concerts of Bobi Wine. The petitioners say they have incurred huge losses for failing to host concerts involving the Kyadondo East MP and artist, Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu.

They also say police has imposed on them irregular requirements before they stage concerts such as securing fire tenders, an ambulance and security, which are not at their disposal. The petition stems from a decision by police to stop Kyagulanyi’s music concerts.

Kyagulanyi, who is fondly referred to as Ghetto president, has had over five music concerts cancelled by security on grounds that the venue was taken. One of such concerts was the launch of his Kyarenga song at Mandela National Stadium in October, which prompted him to move it to Busabala beach in November following interference by security over the venue.

Now, music promoters and event managers want the speaker to intervene, saying several people are losing huge sums of money. Yasin Kaweesi from Emma Promotions bankrolled the Kyarenga music concert. According to Kaweesi, Bobi Wine is the most popular artist at the moment, arguing that blocking his concerts is tantamount to losses for events organizers.

He says police has sanctioned concerts without Bobi Wine but once his name comes up, the permission is withdrawn. He says different event organizers and promoters are affected. Kaweesi asks government not to only to look at the political angle but consider the economic aspect as well.

He says police has so far cancelled concerts in Namboole, Masaka and Mityana among others worth Shillings 5 billion.

Sarah Nassuna, an Events Organizer said she put up two shows involving Bobi Wine but they were cancelled by police, which also confiscated her music system. She says she got a loan from money lenders to invest in the show and is being threatened because of failure to pay back.

She wants Government to help her get back more than Shillings 50 million she lost or else her children and family will suffer the consequences.

Kadaga asked the team to hold on, saying parliament is yet to discuss the matter. She told the petitioners that the matter has already come to the floor of the house and the line minister was expected to issue a statement.

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