Court summons Bobi Wine to answer queries over his age, academic papers
he Chief Magistrates Court at Wakiso has Tuesday summoned Presidential aspirant Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias ” Bobi Wine” to appear before it on Wednesday 16th to answer charges of giving false information, obtaining registration by false pretence and uttering false documents.
The summons follow private criminal proceedings insitituted with the Court by controversial lawyer Male Mabirizi against the Kyadondo East legislator citing disparities in his age and academic documents – imputing dishonesty.
According to Mr Mabirizi, whereas documents obtained from the National Identification Registration Authority(NIRA) indicate Bobi Wine’s date of birth as 2nd February, 1980 , the legislator uses 12th February, 1982 as his official date of birth.
Mabirizi further claims that it is impossible for Bobi Wine to have completed his A’levels in March 1998 as indicated in his documents obtained from the Uganda National Examinations Board ( UNEB).
” Although UNEB’s letter of certification of the results for Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE) in the names of Kyagulanyi Ssentamu R shows that he sat exams in 1996, that of the UACE shows that he sat in March 1998 within a space of less than two years yet sitting the exams at the end of 1996, he had to wait for the results early 1997 which means he spent only one year in A’level, if he sat at all, instead of the required two years and it is not clear who of the two sat” Mr Male Mabirizi says.
However on Monday, Bobi Wine at a Press Conference held at his National Unity Platform headquarters in Kamwokya dismissed Mr Mabirizi’s claims as State sponsored to suppress his activism and candidacy.
” Dictators use these tricks to divert opponents, embarass them and detract them. Whenever the regime has wanted to deter its opponents, some Ugandans have availed themselves to be used as tools” Mr Bobi Wine said.
” I was born on February 12th 1982 in Nkozi. My brother Julius Walakila who I follow – same father, same mother was born on 23rd October 1979 according to all his official records. There is no way I would be born on 12th February 1980 only four months after the birth of my elder brother. ”
Bobi Wine also explained how the disparity came about and that he was talks with NIRA to rectify it. He said: ” While I was in Primary 6, my father went and requested the headmaster of my former school to allow me register and sit Primary 7 exams there. I therefore spent my third term of Primary 6 in Primary 7. I registered there and sat for PLE in 1992.
” My father was advised that in order for my age to match with that of other candidates who included my elder brother who was sitting Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) the same year, he needed to increase my age by two years. That is when my year of birth was altered from 1982 to 1980. Despite sitting PLE without studying Primary 7, I passed my exams well.
” But I would continue with this anomaly in age throughout my education both at UCE, UACE and University Education. Therefore it was at the point of getting my first passport in March, 2000 that I decided to correct this anomaly in my date of birth to reflect the real which is February 12th 1982. I remember swearing an affidavit to reflect this change.”
The authenticity of Mr Bobi Wine’s academic documents was also defended by UNEB which explained that at the time he come to complete his A’ levels in March 1998 the examinations board was shifting from doing exams in March to November and December.
” There were two cohorts at that time, the one which sat their UCE in 1995 and another in 1996 where Hon Kyagulanyi lies. We had to bring these cohorts together and do the exams in November and December. That means the first cohort did their exams a litle bit late and the second earlier than they should have. But there is no problem in Bobi Wine’s papers ” Ms Jennifer Kalule, the UNEB spokesperson told Daily Monitor.
Under Ugandan electoral law, a person is disqualified from running for the office of President if he or she does not possess the UACE education requirement or its equivalent. If convicted, Bobi Wine could also be blocked from running for office in that he will have been convicted of offences involving dishonesty as provided for by the Constitution.