Uganda Says Goodbye to General Aronda Nyakairima


Thousands of Ugandans gathered in the ancestral home town of General Aronda Nyakairima yesterday to pay tribute to the fallen military officer.

Among the attendants was President Yoweri Museveni, the chief mourner at the funeral service held in Nyakiju Village, Kitojo parish in Buyanja, Rukungiri district. The ceremony was led by Bishop Patrick Tugume Tugimisirize of the North Kigezi Diocese.

A man of strength, prematurely lost

Widow Lindah Aronda described her husband as a loving father and husband who had never “failed to get out of bed [because of illness]” or shown symptoms of the heart failure reported by the postmortem.

President Museveni suggested Aronda had been suffering in silence from a medical condition for some time, however.

“But now he has died at an early age and from a medical cause,” said the president. “If I had known this medical cause, I don’t know what would have happened – maybe something could have been done.”


Questions still unanswered

Question marks remain over Aronda’s untimely death and reports have now emerged that the Internal Affairs minister complained of dizziness before leaving South Korea, but was told not to seek treatment due to a lack of medical insurance.

At the State funeral, held at Kololo ceremonial grounds in Kampala on Friday, President Museveni pointed the finger at South Korea for failing to attend to Aronda’s condition:

“Surely in South Korea they must have emergencies. How can someone come as an emergency and then you say insurance, insurance. You treat him and see if he will not pay,” insisted the President.

Aronda’s widow Linda also raised questions over the findings of the postmortem report: “This heart problem they are talking about, okay, it might have been there but the 20 years I have lived with my husband I have never seen him sick,” she said. “My children are witnesses; we have never seen him sick.”

Featured image:

African Land Forces Summit closes in Kampala (7248403906)” by US Army Africa from Vicenza, Italy – African Land Forces Summit closes in Kampala. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

About Aaron Brooks

Aaron Brooks is a UK journalist who wants to cut out the international agendas in news. Spending his early years in both England and Northern Ireland he saw the difference between reality and media coverage at an early age. After graduating from the University of Chester with a BA in journalism, his travels revealed just how large the gap between news and the real world can be. As Editor-in-Chief at East Africa Monitor, it’s his job to provide a balanced view of what’s going on in the region for English-speaking audiences.