The children of former security minister Gen Elly Tumwine have paid tribute to their father, revealed what it looked like to be with him in his last days on earth, and promised to carry on his legacy, and keep united.
The children, who included Cythia, Sharah and Daudi, spoke at an event to celebrate the life of the general. The event was held at the Kololo Independence Grounds in Kampala on Monday, August 29, 2022.
Cynthia Tumwine described her father as “a truly extraordinary man” who “had a deep love for God, a deep love for his country but most importantly, a deep love for his family.”
Cynthia added: “Growing up, we experienced so much for from our father. As a result, we have turned out to be loving people. From every single milestone as children, there is none that I can think of and not see my father’s face: from when we were born to when we were baptised and confirmed.”
She also described her father as a man who lit up the family’s birthday celebrations.
“Birthdays are a very big deal in our family. If it meant that we had to stay up to 1am waiting for daddy to return from his duties, we would stay up because what was a birthday without daddy present?” she narrated.
She also talked about how much her father loved his country’s “beauty, nature, fresh air, food and the blessings this country has to offer.”
Cynthia also revealed that she will also cherish an opportunity she had to proofread a book on NRM’s Achievements that Gen Tumwine authored with Dr Gilbert Gumoshabe of Makerere University.
She also revealed that they were convinced that Gen Tumwine “was at peace as he left” and that they will miss “the energy that he was, the presence, smile, laughter and all the good memories.”
Another daughter named Sharah described their father as “one of a kind,” “unapologetically himself, unique in expression, passion and values.”
She also emphasized Tumwine’s love for cows, particularly the long-horned cows, a love that was “greatly expressed in his artwork and sketches.”
One of Tumwine’s sons, Daudi Aryatamba Tumwine, described his father as “a Child of God, a General of the NRA and UPDF, husband of one, and the father of many, both literally and figuratively.”
Daudi Aryatamba Tumwine recalled that the general always told them that it was never too late to do the right thing.
Aryatamba also revealed that Tumwine had advised them to use their intelligence to be of help to their communities.
Other lessons from his father, Aryatamba continued, included the fact that nobody knows everything and nobody knows nothing. He also revealed that Gen Tumwine taught them that “the biggest room in the world is room for improvement.”
Tumwine’s son also talked about his father’s last 14 days on earth.
“Our last 14 days with him were a furnace where my mother, Brenda and others were tested to the core,” said Aryatamnba.
“To see your father look at you and tell you the words you fear most, not with his mouth but with his eyes — and in Daddy’s case, with one eye — is one of the hardest things I have experienced.”
Meanwhile, the doctors who were handling Gen Elly Tumwine until he died have revealed details about the general’s sickness from the time he fell sick until he breathed his last. They also spoke on allegations that Gen Tumwine’s lung cancer was caused by smoking. (Read Story Here).
In a related development, a daughter of Gen Tumwine has asked Ugandans to forgive her father, while a friend of the fallen general ‘cursed’ MP Ssemujju Nganda and other Ugandans who have been celebrated the general’s death. (Read Stories Here and There).