When President Museveni visited the late Gen. Aronda Nyakairima’s home to commiserate with his family over his death, he told mourners who had gathered to keep wake that government is investigating the cause of the 56-year-old senior government official.
What the President forgot to tell the mourners, however, is that the investigations will never be made public, even when the late was a public servant, and hence speculation will be allowed to fill the vacuum.
If the investigation report gets to be made public, then good; but if it never gets to see the light of day, it will not be the first time.
Uganda has been rocked with many unexplained deaths of high profile people. As usual, government promises to leave no stone unturned and to go to the bottom of the matter. Investigation teams are formed and as the matter goes off the media front pages, the matter also goes under and any attempt to extract a report from government becomes an infringement on national security.
As the country mourns the passing of Gen. Aronda, with the hindsight that it will never know what really killed him, Eagle Online reminds of the prominent Ugandans who died in mysterious circumstances. Some have been dismissed, by the president, as having been irresponsible in life— as a way of explaining their deaths while others, government simply chose to threaten those who were seeking the truth.
From death at the hand of a mistress to a late night accident and drug abuse, here are the eight Ugandans we should never forget.
Brig. Noble Mayombo
By the time of his death Noble Mayombo had raised through army ranks to become a Brigadier. He was the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Defence and Board Chairman for Vision Group. In April 2007, Brigadier Noble Mayombo felt unwell and was admitted to Kololo hospital where he was diagnosed with acute pancreatitis a sudden inflammation of the pancreas, which causes the organ to leak its enzymes into the surrounding tissues and organs, leading the pancreas and surrounding organs to start digesting themselves (autodigestion).
The next day, his condition having worsened, he was transferred to the intensive care unit at International Hospital Kampala. His condition deteriorated further and on Sunday April 29,2007, comatose, on life-support systems, he was flown to Agha khan Hospital in Nairobi Kenya. He was airlifted to Nairobi in the Presidential Gulfstream on the orders of President Yoweri Museveni his , mentor and trusted comrade, However, Noble Mayombo died at Agha Khan Hospital in Nairobi, due to complications of acute pancreatitis. At the time of his death, he was only forty two years old.
The sudden illness and death of Brigadier Mayombo shocked most who learned of the news.
Speculation that there might have been foul play involved in his death prompted government to launch an investigation into his sudden death.
The three-person team that carried out the investigation included: Dr. Peter Mugenyi, Director of the Joint Clinical Research Center, as the chairman, Colonel James Mugira, Commander UPDF Tank Unit and (c) Lieutenant Tagaswire Rusoke, a biochemist in the UPDF.
The team concluded their investigation and handed their report to President Museveni in November 2007. As of February 2015, the detailed findings of that probe have never been released to the public.
Maj. Gen. James Kazini
Maj. Gen. James Kazini served as the Army commander between 2001 to 2003. On the morning of November 10, 2009, Major General James Kazini died at the home of his girlfriend, in Namuwongo, a Kampala suburb, after allegedly being struck on the head with a metal pipe during a domestic fracas. At the time of his death James Kazini was 52 years old. The 28-year-old Lydia Draru, the killer who, was arrested, presented before court and charged with murder. She was convicted of man slaughter in 2011 and sentenced two fourteen years in prison where she is serving her sentence in Luzira Maximum Prison.
Gen. Aronda Nyakairima
By the time of his death, Gen. Aronda was the Minister for Internal Affairs and Member of Parliament representing the Army. Previously he served as the Chief of Defense Forces from 2003 to 2013. According to the Pamela Ankunda the Spokesperson for the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Aronda WHO was 56 died on the morning of Saturday September 12, 2015. He was transiting through Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. His death occurred mysteriously and the cause of his death has not yet been known to the public.
According to the President, government is busy investigating the cause of his death.
Ayume died in a motor accident in 2005 while returning to Kampala from his Arua home. At the time of his death he was the Attorney General but he had previously served as speaker of Parliament as well. Ayume died in a mysterious motor vehicle accident along Masindi- Kampala road with many people calling upon government to carry out an investigation suspecting there might be foul play especially given the type of car he was using and the driver who drove the car at the time of the accident. However after burial no investigation was carried out and that is how the man from West Nile went.
Nebanda was Woman Member of Parliament Butaleja district. She was a young but out spoken legislator. On many occasions, she tackled government on issues like corruption, youth unemployment, increasing poverty levels among others. She was the youngest woman to elected to Parliament and she died aged 24.
Some Members of Parliament suspected e that Nebanda was poisoned, as she was a vocal critic of the government, and that the state was “arresting anyone suspected to be propagating that line among those arrested were two MPs, one of whom was Mohamed Nsereko
A government chemist’s post mortem report stated that cocaine, heroin, alcohol, and several other chemicals were found in Nebanda’s blood, intestinal tract, and tissue samples. At Nebanda’s funeral, however, Speaker Rebecca Kadaga rejected this report. Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni denied that the National Resistance Movement, the political party to which he and the late Nebanda belonged to, had killed her.
On January 2,2013, police announced that they had opened an investigation into Nebanda’s death and linked it to what they called “a narcotic drug syndicate operating in a number of countries including Uganda, Pakistan, and South Sudan” On January 4, Nebanda’s boyfriend, Adam Suleiman Kalungi, was arrested in Kenya and extradited to Uganda for questioning by police. In July 2014, he was acquitted of the criminal charges surrounding her death
Eria Sebunya Bugembe aka Kasiwukira
The Kampala businessman of the Kwagalana group was gunned down by unknown gunmen in outside his palace in Muyenga while he was doing his morning jogging. His death was linked one of his wives Sarah Nabikolo her sister Sandra Nakungu and a police constable Ashiraf Jardin. The case is still ongoing and the trio is still on remand in prison.
Bryan Bukenya was son to the former Vice President Gilbert Balibasseka Bukenya. Bukenya, a UPDF cadet died in a motor vehicle accident in on November 7, 2009 at Bbira, about 15kilometers along Mityana road. However, there was a lot of speculation surrounding his death with even his father claiming that government may have had a hand in his death. Prof. Bukenya even denied having received the post mortem from Mulango Hospital. While speaking at the funeral of Bryan Bukenya, President Yoweri Museveni said he would probe the circumstances under which the accident occurred, wondering why they travelled so early in the morning. However, the probe was never carried out.
She was shot dead On the evening of Monday, March 30, 2015, at about 7.30 pm local time, Joan Kagezi, who was driving an official Ford double-cabin pick up with government number plates, but without security, stopped at a road-side stand to buy fresh vegetables, in the Kampala suburb of Kiwaatule.
When Kagezi opened the window, the man pulled out a gun and shot her twice in the neck at close range, jumped on the back of a waiting motor cycle (boda boda) and sped off. She was rushed to Mulago National Referral Hospital, where she was pronounced on arrival at about 8.00 pm, Kampala time. She was 47 years old
On April 8, 2015, a heavily armed force of Ugandan and US security officials apprehended Jamal Abdullah Kiyemba an individual formerly held in Guantanamo.[7Three other men apprehended with Kiyemba were: Ismael Ssendawula, Siraje Serugo and Bashir Nyangisu. At the time of her death, she was prosecuting the 2011 Lugogo bomb suspects.