Bobi Wine moves to block URA recall of his ‘Bulletproof’ SUV

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Robert Kyagulanyi stands besides his newly acquired armored SUV; Courtesy Photo

National Unity Platform president, Robert Kyagulanyi, has written to Uganda’s tax collection body Uganda Revenue Authority protesting re-examination of his newly acquired vehicle.

Last week, Kyagulanyi who challenged president Yoweri Museveni for presidency last month, excited his local supporters when he declared on social media that his supporters living abroad had bought him an armored vehicle to help him get through a violent campaign period.

Kyagulanyi’s new acquisition has since sent shockwaves in supporters of the ruling government with others questioning how an armored vehicle underwent clearance more so handed over to a political leader without authorities’ knowledge.

On 24th February 2021, URA wrote to Bobi Wine directing a recall for his new Toyota Landcruiser Reg. No. UBJ 667F for re-evaluation.

In the February 26th letter of objection addressed to the URA Commissioner for Customs, Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine says URA’s decision to recall and re-examine his vehicle is not only arbitrary but also lacks legal basis.

Through his lawyers, Wameli and Company Advocates, Kyagulanyi objects to directives from URA to recall the vehicle claiming the tax body has no powers to re-examine the vehicle since it went through assessment and examination before it was released to the owner.

In the letter, Kyagulanyi claims that while URA has powers under section 236(d) of the EAC Customs Management Act to examine goods, it lacks automatic powers to re-examine goods which were in their custody, were examined, assessed to tax, and the tax fully paid.

“Your decision to recall our client’s motor vehicle is not only arbitrary and without no legal basis but it is also a threat to our client’s right to property and privacy, among others” the letter reads in part before adding;

“This is to therefore demand that you immediately withdraw your decision to recall our clients motor vehicle as long as such decision is arbitrary and unsupported by any law”

What we know about Bobi’s SUV:

From the documents this website saw, Kyagulanyi’s vehicle is not new as some media reports initially alleged. The vehicle was purchased from Kenya by a one Fauz Khalid and registered there before it was delivered to Uganda.

It was registered in Kenya number KCY 550X, and Kyagulanyi’s agent registered this Vehicle as 2018 model yet it is 2019 model. Kyagulanyi then paid 80 millions for the taxes through his agent a one Cranimer and URA gave the vehicle clearance.

Permission to clear this vehicle was issued on 12th January 2021 so the car has been in the country since then even after elections but hidden away from public view.

However, sources indicate that Kyagulanyi’s vehicle is not armored as alleged. It is also alleged that Bobi’s new ride is valued between 300m to 400m shillings.

An SUV, Diesel type, Chassis number JTMHV05JBO4254974, Log Book number K3323207K, a 5 seater ride, was manufactured in 2019 meaning that by Ugandan standards, it is a new vehicle.

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