Africa-Press – Uganda. The Bagwere community from the four districts of Pallisa, Butebo, Budaka and Kibuku, are in total shock and grief following the sudden death of their cultural Leader (Ikumbania), his highness, Dr John Chrystom Weyabire.
“It has been confirmed that the cultural leader succumbed to Covid-19,” Budaka District Health Officer (DHO), Dr Elisa Mulwani remarked.
The Ikumbania (Weyabire) passed on at Entebbe Hospital yesterday evening.
The cultural leader who was born in 1957 in Kenkebu sub-county,present –day Kibuku district, had been battling the pandemic for close to a week.
Dr Mulwani said the deceased’s body was still in Entebbe Hospital Ward B.
Bagwere cultural institution officials told Daily Monitor that the cultural leader (Weyabire) started feeling ‘uneasy’ soon after Presidential and Parliamentary elections on January 14- which he had attributed to various meetings held with his subjects.
Cultural official Mr. Fredrick Koire said that prior to leaving for Kampala-for rest in one of his homes, Mr. Weyabire had told him that he was not feeling well and needed rest, but instead started weakening and had to seek medical attention.
“The situation continued to worsen day by day until it was discovered that he was suffering from Covid-19. He was put under intensive care but still the situation couldn’t improve until he died at Entebbe hospital,” Mr Koire said.
“A detailed report about the cause of his death will be released in the medical report,” he added.
Mr. Moses Mauki, the Minister of finance, Planning and economic development in the Obwa Ikumbania Bwa Bugwere said: “It’s quite shocking that we as Bagwere have lost our gallant cultural leader who had stood on the practices and norms of the Bagwere as he has been the pillar and unifier of the Bagwere.”
The Institution’s Minister of information, Mr. Michael Kirya, said that the Ikumbania has been a steadily progressive leader who has spear-headed a number of programmes like giving bursaries to vulnerable children, treatment to the poor.
“He has been a humble and polite leader who had a good heart for the people of Bugwere,” he said.
However, the Public Relation officer (PRO) Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development, Mr. Frank Mugabi said preparations are on to hand the cultural leader a state burial.
The date for the burial has not been ascertained.