Police drop plans to summon Oulanyah’s father

Mr Nathan Okori, the father of the deceased former Speaker of Parliament, Jacob Oulanyah. PHOTO/ MARKO TAIBOT

What you need to know:

  • Two weeks ago, Mr Enanga named Mr Okori, Minister for ICT Chris Baryomunsi, Kilak South legislator Gilbert Olanya, National Unity Platform party leader Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine, among the people they intended to interrogate.

The police have backed off plans to summon the father of the late Jacob Oulanyah, Members of Parliament and other people, who allegedly made statements that the former Speaker of Parliament was poisoned. 

On April 11, police spokesman Fred Enanga said they were to summon anyone, including Mr Nathan Okori, the deceased’s father, who made allegations that Oulanyah was poisoned.

The police U-turn about the summonses comes days after government officials, including the Internal Affairs minister, Maj Gen (Rtd) Kahinda Otafiire, and religious leaders, described it as inhumane for the detectives to summon Mr Okori because he was still mourning the death of his son.

Mr Enanga yesterday said the detectives decided to start with gathering other information about the case and they would summon people probably later. 

“The detectives took a decision to first focus on gathering information before summoning anyone,” Mr Enanga said. 

During the burial of Oulanyah in Omoro District on April 8, Mr Okori publicly repeated the allegation that he first made on March 20, that his son had told him that he was poisoned.

The health of Oulanyah, 56, deteriorated rapidly shortly after his May 2021 election as the Speaker of the 11th Parliament and following back-to-back hospitalisation before he died in the United States last month.

Two weeks ago, Mr Enanga named Mr Okori, Minister for ICT Chris Baryomunsi, Kilak South legislator Gilbert Olanya, National Unity Platform party leader Robert Kyagulanyi, alias Bobi Wine, among the people they intended to interrogate.

Others were Aruu North MP Santa Okot, former Tourism minister Godfrey Kiwanda, Dokolo South MP Felix Okot Ogong, and popular northern Uganda musician Bosmic Otim.

On April 14, while meeting the Defence and Internal Affairs Committee in Parliament, Maj Otafiire said it was improper for the police to summon people that would have acted as witnesses.  He said the police should have gone quietly to Mr Okori’s home and talked to him. 

Mr Baryomunsi also attacked police for threatening to summon him yet he had never made any claims that the deceased was poisoned. 

Kampala Archbishop Paul Ssemogerere during his Easter Mass condemned gagging of people who talk about the cause of Oulanyah’s death adding that the government should only investigate the allegations. 

Earlier, the Puranga chiefdom prime minister and also its spokesman Francis Mawa told this publication that they wouldn’t allow Mr Okori to go to police, but they would represent him.

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