Gen. Elly Tumwine breathes his last

Former Security Minister, General Elly Tumwine has breathed his last this morning at Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi where he had been rushed a fortnight ago following failure by Doctors at Nakasero hospital to contain his illness.

In a press statement, the UPDF Spokesperson, Brig Felix Kulayigye has confirmed the sad news, “We register our condolences with the family and the entire UPDF fraternity as well as all Ugandans of good will,” reads part of the press statement.

Gen Tumwine’s condition started worsening while at Nakasero hospital prompting doctors to refer him to Aga Khan Hospital, Nairobi.

Last week, social media was awash with alleged news of his demise but authorities were quick to quash the speculations advising the public to treat such with contempt.

The five star general has been battling cancer related complications.

Gen. Tumwiine has been part of the leadership of the NRA- UPDF as well as serving the government in various capacities. Those capacities included being Army- Commander, member of the High Command, Director-General of Intelligence, Minister of Security,” added President Museveni via his Twitter handle.

Gen. Elly Tumwine was born on April 12, 1954, in Burunga, Mbarara District.

He attended Burunga Primary School, Mbarara High School, and St. Henry’s College Kitovu, before joining Makerere University in 1977 where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Art with specialty in the history of art painting.

In 1978, he put his teaching career to a hault to join the FRONASA forces led by Yoweri Museveni to fight the Idi Amin regime. In 1981, he trailed president Museveni to the bush and was part of the formation of the first cohort of the National Resistance Army-NRA.

To a great attestation and his commitment to deliver a free Uganda for Ugandans, Gen. Tumwine fired the first shot that opened an attack on Amin’s Gorvernment propelling the National Resistance Army and National Resistance Movement into power in 1986.

During the fighting, Gen. Tumwine sustained facial injuries that led to the loss of one of his eyes.

In 1984, Tumwine was named Commander of the Army, a position he held until 1987 when he was succeeded by General Salim Saleh.

He also served as Minister of State for Defence in 1989, Director General of the External Security Organization (ESO) from 1994 until 1996, Presidential Adviser from 1996 until 1998, and Chairman of the High Command Appeals Committee from 1986 until 1999.

In September 2005, he was promoted to the rank of general in the UPDF and appointed chairperson of the UPDF General Court Marshal.

Gen. Tumwine will be remembered as the highest-ranking members of the Ugandan military who said it was okay for police to shoot at violent protesters following the November 2020 riots.

He also ordered the military to incarcerate and send opposition members to be tried in military courts based on trumped up charges, an order which saw Bobi Wine supporters suing for Human Rights violations.
The United States of America responded by imposing sanctions on some Ugandan generals citing human rights abuses.

In May last year, Tumwiine was among 34 generals who retired from the UPDF. He has died aged 68 leaving behind two children; Cynthia Tumwine, Eriya Tumwine Junior.

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