Uganda mourns Arua MP Ibrahim Abiriga
At about 7pm, in the evening of June 8, gun shots went off at Kirinnyabigo near Kawanda in Wakiso district.
The gunmen, riding on a motorcycle were targeting Arua Municipality MP Ibrahim Abiriga who was driving in a yellow Volkswagen.
A practicing Muslim, Abiriga was driving home to break his fast of the Islamic holy month of Ramadhan.
His armed UPDF guard had his head shuttered with bullets as the MP’s assailants ensured that their target is finished off.
A few bullets were fired into the air to scare away onlookers and for assailants to create an easy escape route.
An ardent NRM supporter who never kept the ruling party’s yellow colour off his body, Abiriga won many admirers and at the same time many loathed him for his strong support for President Yoweri Museveni and the NRM.
But it is his honesty that made him a darling to even the opposition politicians. For instance, when almost everyone in NRM was feigning ignorance about government’s plans to scrap presidential age limits, Abiriga would freely and openly speak to journalists about the secret meetings he sat in to plot for the Age Limit Bill.
This probably explains why many took to the social media to mourn the former Arua RDC (Resident District Commissioner) who started his military career during the days of Idi Amin.
Disturbing reports are reaching us that Hon @AbirigaIbrahim has been shot dead. We await confirmation by the @PoliceUg which has swiftly moved to the area. We stand with his family in this trying moment. @RuhakanaR @Parliament_Ug
— Frank K Tumwebaze,MP (@FrankTumwebazek) June 8, 2018
Abiriga’s killing came just two days after Museveni delivered the State of the Nation address to MPs in which he spoke about the mysterious killings and kidnaps.
Shocked that Abiriga, who formed put of his State of the Nation address audience at the Serena Kampala International Conference Centre had been gunned, Museveni tweeted, directing the security agencies to expeditiously investigate Abiriga’s “senseless killing.”
I have received news about the senseless killing of Arua Municipality MP, Hon Ibrahim Abiriga, and his bodyguard on the city’s outskirts. I have tasked security agencies to expeditiously find these killers and the nation will be updated soon. May Hon Abiriga’s soul rest in peace.
— Yoweri K Museveni (@KagutaMuseveni) June 8, 2018
Opposition icon Dr Kizza Besigye tweeted saying that with a dysfunctional security system, the country needs a new start.
TRAGIC! Uganda’s insecurity affects upper &bottom rungs of society equally &brutally! Security systems are clearly dysfunctional. A new start necessary.
My thoughts &prayers go to Hon Abiriga’s family, relatives &friends.
Inna lillahi wa inna illahi raj’un. @PGovUg @Parliament_Ug https://t.co/oHcX3C2pYW
— Kifefe Kizza-Besigye (@kizzabesigye1) June 8, 2018
Other messages include:
— Kin Kariisa (@KKariisa) June 8, 2018
The 1st day I met him, I helped his faulty car back on road. Had a chat with him, learnt he wasn’t a bad man! He was just funny & realistic. I think ABIRIGA is just a victim of Politics. He did not deserve such death. Sad, RIP. @ntvuganda @nbstv @DailyMonitor @kizzabesigye1 pic.twitter.com/nPvd22uqRw
— Ingrid Turinawe (@IngridTurinawe) June 8, 2018
Parliament has learnt and confirms that Hon Ibrahim Abiriga,MP Arua Municipality has been shot dead at Kawanda. The Parliamentary Commission sends it condolences to his family, constituents and the country at large. May his soul rest in peace. #RIPAbiriga pic.twitter.com/mALAvY5pO4
— Parliament of Uganda (@Parliament_Ug) June 8, 2018
— Sadab Kitatta (@sadabkitatta79) June 8, 2018
At about 11:50pm the bodies of Abiriga and his bodyguard were taken away to the City Mortuary for an autopsy examination.
According to a tentative funeral program, police will hand over the MP’s body to A plus funeral services on Saturday by 2pm.
On Sunday, the body will be taken to Parliament at 10am for a special sitting of Parliament before it is flown to Arua for burial on Monday.
Compiled by, Ben Kerry & Gyagenda Kabuubi