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The late Jackline Arinaitwe Mbareeba. PHOTO/COURTESY

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Jackline Mbareeba: Pilgrim who died serving church until her last hour

What you need to know:

  • Mbareeba, who died a few kilometres from the Anglican Martyrs’ shrine, is remembered as a dedicated believer.

Days preceding to the Martyrs’ Day celebrations will never be the same again for the late Jackline Arinaitwe Mbareeba’s family. 

Mbareeba collapsed and died a few kilometres away from Uganda Martyrs Anglican Shrine in Nakiyanja, the final destination, on Monday after walking from Rubirizi District. 

The group that the deceased was travelling with was at the second checkpoint when she collapsed. 

Mbareeba, 49, was a resident of Katokori One in Katanda Sub-county. 

According to the widower, Mr Godfrey Mbareeba, this was the third time his wife was making the pilgrimage.

Mr Mbareeba said the deceased was raised in Kihiihi, Kanungu District and they met in Rubirizi. 

They got married in 1988 and have been engaged in small-scale agriculture, mainly growing bananas and vanilla for a living. The couple have nine children.

“She has been a peaceful wife and taking good care of our children. We did not go far in formal education, but we have managed to live together in harmony. She has been a committed believer,” Mr Mbareeba said.

The family had earlier contributed Shs1.8m to towards buying a keyboard for their local church.

“By the time she left, we were planning on doing something else,” Mr Mbareeba said.

When she announced plans to join pilgrims to Namugongo earlier this year, the family gave her their blessing.

“We blessed her journey and committed to praying for her,” Mr Mbareeba said.

He added that his wife has always been in good health. Upon arrival at Namugongo, she would inform them that she had reached safely.

Ms Enid Tukamuhebwa, the couple’s first born daughter, said her mother died a faithful believer and before participating in the third pilgrimage, she convinced her sister, Ms Evalyne Kansiime, to walk with her.

Inspires daughter

“She had inspired my sister, who is in Dubai, to go with them to Namugongo, but Covid-19 stopped her then. But she had promised to walk with our mother,” Ms Tukamuhebwa said.
The late Mbareeba’s elder sister, Ms Annah Kobusingye, remembers the deceased as a soft-spoken person, who participated in all activities of the church.

“When they left for Namugongo, I kept praying that they would arrive safely and God answered their prayers. We last talked on Saturday and she was in good health,” Ms Kobusingye said.

The Rev Sam Twazagye, the leader of foot pilgrims from West Ankole,  said they were still waiting for the post-mortem report from Mulago hospital. 

“The post-mortem report is still pending. We keep getting sketchy information. Maybe the full report will be given at the burial,” the Rev Twazagye said.

Mbareeba will be buried today.

Parishioner hailed

The Rev Canon Faustin Buteera, the Archdeacon of Rugando Archdeaconry, West Ankole Diocese, where Mbareeba was a parishioner, told Daily Monitor that their late member had committed to going for the pilgrimage.

“She was among the people we prayed for and blessed that they represent us. She was a dedicated and regular member of our church,” he said.
 

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