Foreign Policy has included Ugandan singing MP Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine in its annual list of the top 100 Global Thinkers.
Foreign Policy is an American news publication, founded in 1970 and focused on global affairs, current events, and domestic and international policy. It produces content daily on its website, and in six print issues annually.
2019 marks the 10th anniversary of this special edition. The first group comprises thinkers who have had enormous impact on the world in the past decade.
The other groups are for people who have been influential in the past year: thinkers and doers 40 and under, as well as those in defense and security, energy and climate, technology, economics and business, science and health, and activism and the arts.
Uganda’s firebrand singer-turned-politician grew up poor in Kampala. Today, he represents a section of the city as a member of parliament.
Bobi Wine, born Robert Kyagulanyi, has rallied Uganda’s youth by arguing against a proposed social media tax and fighting for the dignity of the poor.
Ugandan soldiers attempted to silence Wine in August 2018, first beating him brutally and then bringing him to trial for treason in a military court, although he is a civilian.
Wine recovered, picked up attention in the international media, and his “people power” campaign continues, undeterred.
In an appreciation message, Bobi Wine said he was extremely honored to be named amongst the Global Thinkers, 2019, alongside other respected world leaders.
“I am humbled that the small things we do for our country and our people are appreciated by the world.”
He said such recognition only reaffirms that his is not a wrong cause.
“It only encourages us to carry on, confident that we are on the right side of history.”
He added: “Indeed, when this struggle is over, as a people, we shall wear the victor’s crown in a new Uganda!”
Others on the list
Other global thinkers on the list include; Jack Ma, co-founder and executive chairman, Alibaba. Alibaba, the e-commerce company he founded in 1999, has enabled businesses to reach once inaccessible consumers, bringing a generation of Chinese citizens into contact with domestic and international markets and helping to fuel China’s breakneck growth.
Christine Lagarde, managing director, International Monetary Fund. Since taking over the International Monetary Fund’s top job in 2011, Christine Lagarde has spent her time in office dispensing tough love.
Fareed Zakaria, author and TV host. One of the most influential foreign-policy analysts for almost two decades, Fareed Zakaria has proved prescient on subjects including the decline of U.S. power, the rise of the rest, and the spread of illiberal democracy.
Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand. Jacinda Ardern, 38 years old, embodies a progressive political counterexample to the age of Donald Trump, one built on inclusiveness and equal rights.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, U.S. Representative from New York. Cortez channeled the rage triggered by Donald Trump’s presidency into something that was once almost unthinkable in the United States: victory by a 29-year-old Latina democratic socialist over a white male Democratic Party machine politician.