By Kobusiinge Monica
Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu also known as Bobi Wine is a Ugandan politician, businessman, entrepreneur, philanthropist and musician, better known by the stage name as Bobi Wine. Effective 11 July 2017, he serves as the Member of Parliament representing Kyadondo East constituency in Wakiso District, in Uganda’s Central Region.
“I’m not a politician, that word doesn’t represent me. I’m a leader” Wine is quick to disqualify himself from such categorization every time one calls him a politician,which he calls Poli-trician.
Wine was born on 12 February 1982, in what was then Mpigi District, but is now Gomba District. He grew up in the Kamwokya slum in the northeast part of Kampala, Uganda’s capital city.
He attended Makerere University in Kampala, where he studied music dance and drama, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts and currently pursuing a law degree at Cavendish University.
He was the President of the group Fire Base Crew. When that group disbanded he started a new group of which he is the president: “Ghetto Republic of Uganja”.
Wine is also professional boxer, and in 2008 the Uganda Professional Boxing Commission (UPBC) gave him a professional boxing license.
In April 2017, he announced his candidacy for parliament in an upcoming by-election for the Kyadondo East Constituency. His house to house walk campaign attracted a lot of attention both in Uganda and abroad. He won that contest by a wide margin with 25,659 votes.
Wine’s lyrics often advocate for ghetto-residents in Uganda. He has supported several practical projects to improve conditions for the poor.
In 2012, he started a campaign to promote more regular cleaning in hospitals, sanitization, garbage management and hand washing to prevent disease.
Also in 2012, Bobi donated funds to build pit latrines and construct a drainage channel in Kisenyi II, a Kampala slum that is described as “filth, crowded shanty structures, poor sanitation and lack of basic social facilities”
Wine is often outspoken about political and social issues in Uganda, and has, as a result, provoked controversy. Infact many of his fans only knew him as an artist, but those who had been critical of his lyrics knew another ‘Lucky Dube, Miriam Makeba,Chaka Chaka, Brenda Fassie or Chiko Chimora’ was emerging, not against apartheid error in South Africa but a similar occurrence synonymous with African leadership behaviors.
Infact,it would be an understatement if one described Bobi Wine only as an entertainer other than Edu-tainer who has only used his musical talent to pass his well musically crafted message to his ever yearning audience.
Full list of Pap Award winners and Categories 2017.
- John Komuruyange Kalekezi – African Revolutionary Life Time Achiever
- John Garang De-Ma Bior-African Revolutionary Leader
- Patrick Tabaro- African Renaissance
- Fagil Mande- African Veteran Educationist
- Arinaitwe Rugyendo-African Young Social & Dev’t Entrepreneur
- Robert Ssentamu Kyagulanyi-African Musical Activist
- Grace Andrua Annasio- African Woman Activist & Entrepreneur
- Mujisha Geofrrey-African Anti-Aids Activist