Ebola Kills 4th Victim As Luweero Muslims Bury Another Without Precaution

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In short
The number of people killed by the deadly Ebola Sudan virus has risen to four with the death of another patient this Sunday in Luweero district.

The number of people killed by the deadly Ebola Sudan virus has risen to four with the death of another patient this Sunday in Luweero district.
 
The Luweero District Health Officer Joseph Okware indentified the latest victim as Halima Nakimbugwe, wife of Muhamadi Kabugo who is suspected to have been the first Ebola victim to die. They were all residents of Kakuute village in Nyimbwa sub county. 
 
Okware says that Nakimbugwe died at Bombo General Military Hospital on Sunday afternoon after battling with the illness.
 
Okware adds that three other people have already tested positive for the Ebola virus in the district. Eight other people are admitted at Mulago Referral hospital and Bombo General Military Hospital with illnesses that display Ebola virus infection. They are awaiting results of tests conducted on their blood samples.
This brings to eleven the total number of persons admitted in the two hospitals.  
 
He adds that 40 people are also under close monitoring by Ministry of Health and WHO officials after coming into contact with the dead persons.
 
Meanwhile a row has emerged between Muslims and District Health Officials over the procedure of burying people who die of Ebola virus.
 
On Saturday, a burial team headed by District Health Surveillance Officer Richard Kawenyera had to abandon a dead body and flee for their lives after Muslims from Bombo town council attacked them at Bombo mosque cemetery.
 
An eyewitness, Frank Nyakairu, who is also chairman LC 3 of Nyimbwa Sub County, says that the health team was burying Twaha Kigozi who died after battling an illness that displayed Ebola symptoms.
 
The Muslims were unhappy that Kigozi was to be burried with no prayers and in a polythene bag as stipulated by health officials. Nyakairu adds that rowdy Muslims attempted to beat up the health team and they had to abandon the dead without burying him. Later the Muslims buried Kigozi in accordance with Islamic burial rituals but no Ebola precautions were taken. 
 
The chairman of District Ebola Task Force and Luweero Resident District Commissioner (RDC), Paul Lubowa, confirmed the incident and said he has put police on high alert to avert any further similar occurances. He says that the Muslim community will also be sensitized on precautions to take while burying a person suspected to have died of the Ebola virus.
 
The first three persons to die of Ebola hailed from Kakuute village in Nyimbwa Sub County and were from the same family. They are Rehema Najjemba, Gladys Namakula and Muhamadi Kabugo.

This is the second ebola outbreak in the country over the last four months. A similar outbreak in July in Kibaale district killed at least 17 people before the area was declared free of the haemorrhagic virus in October.

 

About the author

Brian Luwaga
Since Brian Luwaga joined Uganda Radio Network in 2011, he is still amazed how, "URN is a place that gives journalists a chance to enhance their skills . It gives a journalist an opportunity to adopt and master various aspects of journalism that include radio broadcast, social media, photography and television production."

A practicing journalist since 2009, first with Star FM, Luwaga has always been keen to write about the concerns of the "common person." Based for much of his career in Luweero, Luwaga takes it as a compliment if politicians complain that his reporting is too harsh.

In his journalism, Luwaga likes to merge the past with the present. He believes you cannot understand what is happening now, if you do not have a grounding in the past. Brian Luwaga is the Luweero URN bureau chief. Nakasongola, Nakaseke, Mityana, Mubende and Wakiso districts fall under his docket.

Luwaga is interested in humanitarian work and is a keen Rotarian.