20 December 2012

Uganda: Nebanda's Death Story - the Events From Friday Night

Friday 14th: Dark clouds covered Kampala as the country heard about the mysterious and abrupt death of MP, Cerinah Nebanda.

The inspector general of police Kale Kayihura rushed to Mukwaya General Hospital Nsambya where the legislator was pronounced dead at about 8:30pm, to launch the investigation and calm the family and country.

He however worsened the situation when he alleged that Nebanda might have died of drug consumption to the disappointment the late's family who said they have never see her drinking alcohol.

On Saturday was the microscopic examination in Mulago National referral hospital by a group of three doctors for fair authenticity including commissioner police Dr Moses Byaruhanga who represented the government.

Parliament represented by doctors Chris Baryomunsi, Medard Bitekyerezo and Dr.Sam Lyomoki and family by one professor Stanley. The microscopic examination confirmed that a heavy substance crushed her pancreas and lungs that caused her death.

The three man team later decided to divide the sample in two, one to government and another to parliament and family who are sending it to South Africa for more toxicology analysis.

On Monday Dec. 17: President Museveni visits the family of the deceased and promises a thorough and a quick investigation. He warns the public against speculating that government has a hand in Nebanda's death.

On Tuesday, there was a heated emotional attack during the MP's requiem mass at Christ the King followed by a special session in parliament to honour the late. The church turned political when speakers claimed that IGP had spread malicious information to the media, then the issue of the interception and arrest of the pathologist supposed to take the sample to South Africa is disclosed.

The mourners were angry when a one Lydia Wanyoto, former EALA MP had blocked Theodore Ssekikubo from speaking. The latter was given chance to speak by the late's mother, Alice Namulwa Mukasa .

In his speech the father of late Mukasa Frederick also revealed that a team from government run paper, the New Vision approached him to allow them pronounce that his step daughter died of heart attack.

The first lady Janet Museveni who attended the mass echoed her husband's message that the government did not kill Nebanda.

Shortly after the police spokesperson Judith Nabakooba issued a statement defending the the arrest of Sylvester Dr. Onzivua who was taking the samples to South Africa. She said the pathologist was smuggling the body parts of late Nebanda since he did not follow the right procedures to do so.

In her argument the sample should first be taken to the Government Analytical Laboratory (GAL) and be given a go head from there. She added that Dr. Onzivua who is a pathologist at Mulago did not get accreditation from his superiors.

The special session in parliament made no difference from what happened in the Church .The MPs on the medical team investigating Nebanda's death told the house about Dr. Onzivua's fate.

Dokolo woman MP, Cecilia Ogwal proposed for suspension of the burial slated for Thursday until another sample is taken. Hon. Bitekyerezo stood up and said they are withdrawing from the investigation but the speaker told them to consult themselves and even seek foreign experts if possible. The house resolved to wait for their report on Friday when the house resumes at 10am and asked for the release of Dr Onzivua.

On Wednesday morning the state flew the samples under Dr. Onzivua's possession to London with the brother of the late, Ronald Wandera Hasashya. State house sources said the president had meetings Tuesday night to reach the conclusion of flying it to London with the brother.

In the afternoon the family called a press briefing at their home in Entebbe disowning the state house move and that Wandera was not representing the family. At the same press conference, the mum named Ndorwa west MP,David Bahati as the one who introduced Nebanda to the prime suspect Adam Kalungi. Bahati however dismissed it as a lie.

The medical MPs who were investigating the death also snubbed the president's invitation to state house yesterday morning. Speaking to journalists in the afternoon, Lyomoki said they cannot go have tea when Onzivua is incarcerated in Kireka Special Investigations Unit (SIU), a Kampala suburb.

In another twist, police abandoned the earlier claim of smuggling of body parts and instead charged Dr Onzivua with abuse of office and corruption.

The ministry of health also disowned the police and said they Okayed Dr Onzivua's flight to South Africa with the said samples. Dr. Jane Ruth Acheng, the director general of health services in a press conference at the ministry said she approved his movement and signed the letter herself. A group of 33 MPs led by Abdu Katuntu vowed amidst heavy anti-riot Police not to vacate the SIU premises until Dr. Onzivua is set free.

"We shall not leave SIU until the pathologist is freed," Katuntu said because police sealed off the entrance to SIU premises.

Katuntu was accompanied by the parliamentary commissioner Dr. Chris Baryomunsi, Hassan Kaps Fungaroo (Obongi constituency), Lyomoki (workers MP), and KaSsiano Wadri (Terego MP).

This morning, there was a rumour on twitter that the supposed boyfriend of the fallen MP had died but police was quick to retweet "Yes, he is still on the run."

The police have also said Ronald Hasashya Wandera was blocked by the late MP's family and MPs and was left in Nairobi as the team proceeded to London.

"It is true that he has not gone with the forensic team to London after he was blocked by the family and MPs," Nabakooba said on Thursday.

This afternoon police released a Mulago Hospital Pathologist, Dr. Sylvester Onzivua after spending 48 hours in police custody.

The parliament resumes tomorrow 10 am to listen to the report.

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