One of the children of fallen former security minister Gen Elly Tumwine has asked Ugandans to forgive their late father if he wronged them in any way while he was still alive and executing his duties in the military and government.
Ugandans have been variedly reacting to the news of Gen Tumwine’s death, with some openly celebrating the demise of the former National Resistance Army (NRA) bush war fighter in their posts on social media.
Some of the accusations against Gen Tumwine stem from his 2020 statement in which he made it clear to Ugandans that members of security agencies such as the police officers had the right to shoot protesters if they went overboard.
Then serving as the minister of security, Gen Tumwine’s statement was followed by harassment of supporters of opposition National Unity Platform (NUP), including the shooting of scores in November 2020 protests following the arrest of then presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine, the Ugandan singer-turned-politician.
While some argue that it is ‘un-Ugandan’ and ‘un-African’ to celebrate the death of any human being, those reveling in Tumwine’s death say that he should have done more to prevent the killings of scores during the November 2020 protests and in the political season before, during and after the 2021 general elections.
Gen Tumwine’s reputation seems to have been largely damaged during his last three years in government.
He was security minister from March 2018, replacing Lt Gen Henry Kakurugu Tumukunde, through June 2021 when Gen Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhaburwa Museveni fired him and replaced him with Maj Gen Jim Muhwezi. Gen Tumwine was dropped from cabinet and consoled with a presidential advisor job just like a few other fired super ministers. (Read Story Here).
But according to Tumwine’s daughter, the general famed for firing the first shot that started Museveni’s war had forgiven those who wronged him before he breathed his last.
Addressing mourners at her father’s official vigil at their home in Nakasero in the capital Kampala on Sunday, August 29, 2022, Tumwine’s daughter talked about how they had asked God to forgive their father while he was bedridden at the Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi Kenya.
“When we were in hospital in Nairobi, when we were praying for him, one of the things that we were convicted about was to seek forgiveness on his behalf, to ask God to forgive him of everything that he did knowingly or unknowingly that was wrong and just seek forgiveness so that he is on a clean slate,” said Gen Tumwine’s daughter.
Breaking in tears, Tumwine’s daughter also asked those who felt wronged by the general to forgive him. She went on to say that Gen Tumwine had even forgiven mosquitoes that bit him.
“And I wanted not to just do it with God but also with everyone here. In case daddy wronged you in any way, please forgive him, he forgave you. If you also wronged him, he forgave you. He talked about forgiveness so much,” Tumwine’s daughter begged.
“And I don’t know people who went to functions that he was at, he talked about how he forgave mosquitoes. So, if he can forgive a mosquito, how much more human beings?”
It should be remembered that after he was dropped from cabinet, Gen Tumwine accused Museveni of dumping him from the juicy and powerful government position in trying to regionally balance his political equation.
In his final public message and warning to Museveni, Gen Elly Tumwine told the president not to be a ‘ngamba-nyenka’ and to plan to retire honorably so that he does not destroy the Uganda he has built for decades. (Read and watch Gen Tumwine’s final public message Here).