By Spy Uganda
Kampala: Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine’s struggle for his armored car seems to be far from ending after Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) told court that Bobi wine needed special permission before importing an armored car into the country.
This follows Kyagulanyi’s decision to ran to court to save his car from being impounded by URA after alleging that he is being targeted for his involvement in politics especially the recently concluded 2021 presidential elections as a presidential candidate.
However, Geoffrey Balamaga, a manager in URA’s customs department told court that Kyagulanyi’s vehicle was declared to customs as an ordinary vehicle and not an armored one, and therefore, less taxes were paid for it which contrary to the customs law.
“Armored vehicles are restricted items under the Customs law and the law regulating the Uganda People’s Defence Forces and requires special permission to import or own and thus it would only be proper if the applicant(Kyagulanyi) cooperates with the respondent(URA) to clarify on and clear the matter as the law requires,” URA’s Balamaga said in his affidavit.
Balamaga further noted that unless examined for the second time, the queries raised on the vehicle would remain pending and yet substantial in nature.
In his application to stop URA from impounding his armored vehicle, Kyagulanyi said his Tundra Vehicle was impounded in 2018 and is currently parked at Arua Central Police Station, adding that he has for long been targeted by the state by either damaging, destroying or confiscating his vehicles.
“If the plaintiff hands over his motor vehicle to the defendant, he will be left without means of transport and without the protection he sought in this particular motor vehicle, especially that the defendant is not even specific on how long the motor vehicle will stay in the possession of the defendant,” Bobi Wine said.
However, URA has dismissed the claims saying they are mere allegations meant to circumvent the law and they are baseless.
“The sweeping allegations of the applicant that he has been a target of different government agencies are denied and false. URA has never targeted the applicant for any reason before, at and after the presidential elections for any sinister reason or at all. The examination of a vehicle could be just a matter of hours if the applicant cooperated and all documents are in order. The fears of the vehicle’s detention for a longer period is baseless.” Balamaga added.
URA further adds that their main aim is to carry out a proper evaluation of the vehicle to ascertain whether it was not under-declared.
URA says Kyagulanyi’s petition before the High Court is misplaced since it ought to have been filed before the Tax Appeals Tribunal which has jurisdiction and wants the court to dismiss it.
The court has set April 6, 2021 as the date to deliver the ruling on the matter.