Nebanda's Family Disputes Police Report On Cause Of Death

4113 Views Butaleja, Eastern Region, Uganda

In short
The preliminary findings indicated that the lungs and pancreas of the deceased MP were damaged. They also indicate that there was alcohol in the body of the deceased. Dr Chris Baryomunsi, the Kinkiizi East MP and a member of the team that examined Nebanda’s body, says they detected “external toxic substances” that could have caused acute pancreatic failure and lung consolidation.

Some members of the late MP Cerinah Nebanda's family have disputed the police preliminary report suggesting the legislator could have died of a drug overdose.

Nebanda, the Woman Member of Parliament for Butaleja district, died suddenly on Friday night while at Mukwaya General Clinic in Nsambya, Kampala, where she was rushed by a man believed to be her lover.

The death of the 24 year old vocal legislator sparked speculation and conspiracy theories, with some people saying she could have been poisoned.
 
Police at the weekend released a preliminary report suggesting that the 24-year-old legislator could have died due to drug overdose. The police preliminary report stemmed from the microscopic study that was carried out by a combined team of doctors including MPs Chris Baryomunsi, Medard Bitekyerezo, Sam Lyomoki and a doctor from the deceased’s family.

The preliminary findings indicated that the lungs and pancreas of the deceased MP were damaged. They also indicate that there was alcohol in the body of the deceased. Dr Chris Baryomunsi, the Kinkiizi East MP and a member of the team that examined Nebanda’s body, told the media on Sunday that they detected “external toxic substances” that could have caused acute pancreatic failure and lung consolidation. Baryomunsi says more tests are to be carried out by the Government Chemist and experts in South Africa to establish the nature of the foreign substance. Baryomunsi, however, ruled out drug abuse and natural causes. He explained that they cannot believe that she died of drug overdose because she never used drugs and was also not a drunk.

To push the overdose line of investigation further, police detectives who searched the home of Nebanda’s lover, one Adams Suleiman Kalungi, say they found bottles of wine in the house. Kalungi is still in hiding, having last seen on Friday night, shortly after the MP was pronounced dead at about 8:00pm.
 
But Mzee Yonasani Hiriye, the grandfather of the late legislator, a resident of Butunga cell, Rujehe ward in Butaleja town council, says as family members, it was too early to trust the police’s preliminary report on the cause of Nebanda’s death. He says they are waiting for the official postmortem report from independent pathologists that the family members have hired to conduct autopsy on the body.

Mzee Hiriye is still doubtful about the unclear circumstances under which his granddaughter, who he insists had never complained of any serious illness, died.

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Ronald Nebanda, a brother to the late MP said the family members are too disappointed with the manner of the police investigation and report over the death of their sister.

He says that the unethical statements made by police about the death of Nebanda had upset the family members who have since suspected foul play in her death.

Ednan Washoko, Nebanda’s paternal uncle says unless government clearly produces substantive evidence indicating the real cause of death, the family continues to suspect that Nebanda’s death was highly organized.

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On Monday, Dr. Baryomunsi told Uganda Radio Network in a telephone interview that it was too early to confirm the cause of Nebanda’s death as they are yet to take her tissue samples to a laboratory in South Africa on Monday for further examinations.

Judith Nabakooba, the Police Spokesperson has declined to say whether police is treating the death as homicide, saying it is too early.

She had complained of a stomach complication before she collapsed just hours after she had her lunch at Speke Resort Munyonyo, where she was reportedly attending a workshop.

Police have said they have so far arrested two people including a one Moses Segawa, a friend to the deceased’s lover.

 

About the author

Denis Olaka
Denis Olaka is the URN bureau chief for Lira, in northern Uganda. Apac and Otuke fall under his docket. Olaka has been a URN staff member since 2011.

Olaka started his journalism career in 2000 as a news reporter, anchor, and then editor for Radio Lira in Lira district. He was subsequently an editor with Lira's Radio Wa in 2004 and Gulu district's Mega FM.

He was also a freelance writer for the Daily Monitor and Red Pepper newspapers.

Olaka's journalism focuses on politics, health, agriculture and education. He does a lot of crime reporting too.