Bow-tie Jacob Oulanyah is finally laid to rest in Omoro (1)
On its descent to the ground, his casket was saluted by 17 guns. PHOTO/NEW VISION

Jacob Oulanyah, the former Speaker of the 11th Parliament, has been laid to rest in Ajuri village in Lalogi Town Council in Omoro District.

The former Speaker of the 11th Parliament, Jacob Oulanyah has finally been laid to rest in Ajuri village, Lalogi Town Council in Omoro District.

His casket received a 17 gun salute as it was lowered to the ground.

Oulanyah died in Seattle, the United States on March 20, 2022, according to the government. His death, however, still raises mixed reactions following claims from his father Nathan Okori that he (Oulanyah) was poisoned which deteriorated his already worrying health state.

His statement, however, contradicts what the government said was the cause of the former Speaker’s death.

While reading a post mortem report earlier this week, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng the health minister said Oulanyah succumbed to multi-organ failure.

“The immediate cause of death was multi-organ failure. The heart failed, the lungs failed, the liver failed and the kidney failed. The kidney and heart failed while in Seatle. He also had multiple bacterial infections while still here and viral infections while in Seattle. The treatment for viral infections further suppressed the bone marrow,” Aceng said.

She mentioned that the whole issue started in 2019 when he (Oulanyah) after a series of medical checkups in Uganda discovered that he had a swelling in the neck.

Aceng revealed that the late also sought medical attention in Germany at that time after which he was told it was cancer that would clear with a long time of medication.

“It was a relatively big swelling and he took it upon himself to seek medical attention in Germany. The swelling was removed, and analysed and he was told it was cancer. He was started on treatment which he finished at the Uganda cancer institute,” Aceng said.

She raised that Oulanyah visited many other hospitals in a bid to acquire treatment for the same illness but kept on facing challenges more so when the outbreak of the Covid 19 stepped in and the 2021 election campaigns that he didn’t get time to go for treatment abroad.

The health minister, however, noted that during this time, Oulanyah was being prepared to be flown abroad by getting in touch with hospitals to provide treatment that didn’t require multiple chemotherapies which had already been done on him and had suppressed his bone marrow.

Aceng noted that by the time he was flown out of the country, the situation was beyond control.

“This suppressed his bone marrow and his body could not produce white and red blood cells whereas he had also developed multi-drug resistant bacteria which he had acquired due to staying in hospital for too long,” Aceng added.

Who was Jacob Oulanyah?

Jacob Oulanyah, 56, was an agricultural economist, and lawyer, who served as the Speaker of the 11th Parliament of Uganda from 2021 until 2022. 

He becomes the first serving Speaker to die in office.

Oulanyah also served as Deputy Speaker of the Ugandan parliament, from May 2011 until May 2021. He was born in the then Gulu District to Nathan Okori and Karen Atwon.

He attended St. Joseph’s College Layibi, Dr Obote College Boroboro, and Kololo Senior Secondary School for his O-Level and A-Level education before joining Makerere University in 1988, and graduating in 1991 with a Bachelor of Arts.