Gen Elly Tumwine succumbs to lung cancer in Nairobi

Gen Elly Tumwine succumbs to lung cancer in Nairobi
Former security minister Gen Elly Tumwine is dead

Kampala, Uganda | URN | Uganda’s former security minister, Gen Elly Tumwine is dead. The four-star General has been battling lung cancer in a hospital in Kenya’s capital Nairobi where he was airlifted to a fortnight ago.

The Defense ministry and Army spokesperson, Brig. Gen Felix Kulayigye could neither confirm nor deny news of Tumwine’s death when contacted by our reporter. He asked our reporter to wait for an official statement.

President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni on Thursday 25, August 2022 confirmed the death of Gen Elly Tumwine. In a brief statement, Mr Museveni says “Gen Tumwine succumbed to lung cancer at around 5:46 am today Thursday in Nairobi, Kenya.”

President Museveni described Gen Tumwine, 68, as a dedicated and hard-working cadre. 

“He joined FRONASA with 9,000 others in 1979, went to Monduli Military School in Tanzania, and was the one who fired the first shot on the 6th February 1981, at Kabamba, at the beginning of the 1981-1986 war of resistance,” Museveni noted.

Adding that “since that time, Gen Elly Tumwine has been part of the leadership of the NRA-UPDF as well as serving the government in various capacities including the army- commander, member of the High Command, director-General Intelligence, and minister of Security. Condolences to his family, to the NRA-UPDF- NRM fraternity, and to all Ugandans. May his soul rest in eternal peace,” said Museveni.

Speaker of Parliament, Anita Among is among the high-ranking government officials who took to social media to express their sadness about the Tumwine’s demise.  

“It is with great sadness that I received the news of the passing of our elder, liberator, Hero, Long-serving Legislator, and former Security Minister Gen Elly Tumwine. My sympathies go to H.E Kaguta Museveni,” Among tweeted.

General Elly Tumwine was appointed minister for Security on March 4, 2018, replacing Lt. Gen Henry Tumukunde. Besides being a minister for Security, Tumwine was the longest serving chairman of the UPDF General Court Martial and UPDF representative in parliament until May last year. He is said to have fired the first shot that kicked off a 5-year guerilla war that brought the current government into power.

Read Also: Lawyers hit back at Gen. Tumwine over his ‘police has a right to kill protesters’ remarks

In November 2020, Gen Tumwine came under fire when he said police had the power to shoot and kill anyone violating the law while responding to questions from journalists about why security had killed over 50 people during simultaneous protests triggered by the arrest of National Unity Platform (NUP) presidential candidate, Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi whole campaigning in Luuka district.

He is also remembered for pointing fingers and warning the former deputy Chief of Defence Forces. Lt Gen Charles Angina to stop meddling and engaging the army in land matters after the former deployed soldiers on disputed land in Muyenga.

Gen Tumwine was born on April 12, 1954. Gen Tumwine was first announced dead on social media last week, but his family and authorities dismissed the reports as false.