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Body of missing catechist found floating on River Rwabakazi

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Residents at the the scene

Kabale, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Living Aryatwijuka, a catechist attached to Rubira Church of Uganda in Kikungiri Archdeaconry and a resident of Katookye village, Kigata Parish, Kyanamira Sub-county in Kabale District, who went missing early this week, has been found dead and floating in a river. Aryanyikuka went missing on January 15, 2024.

His wife, Prudence Ninsiima, said that Aryanyijuka left home at around 10:00 AM, heading to Kikungiri Archdeaconry headquarters in Southern Division, Kabale Municipality, to hand over Sunday offertory collections. Aryanyijuka, however, did not return, and his mobile phone went off. On searching in vain, Ninsiima and Christians developed panic after his motorcycle, coat (maroon in color), church books, and receipt for church money were found abandoned along Kabale-Mbarara road in Rubira village, Kyanamira Sub-county on Tuesday.

On Saturday afternoon at around 04:00 PM, Christians were shocked when they discovered his body floating on the waters of River Rwabakazi under the bridge along Kabale-Mbarara highway in Kyanamira Sub-county, about three kilometers away from Kabale town near Kyanamira trading center. King Gad Niwamanya and Olivia Bahati, some of the Christians in a church where Aryanyikuka was serving, describe his death as uncalled for. They call upon God to help the police so that killers get arrested and punished accordingly.

Rev. Sam Bahati, Kigata Church of Uganda Parish priest who supervises Rubira Church of Uganda, and Rev. Golden Akatuhurira, Kaharo Church of Uganda Parish priest in Kaharo Sub-county, Kabale District, say that it is unfortunate to find that while the Church preaches togetherness among Christians, there are still some who target the clergy to kill them. They say people with such heartless behavior should repent. They mention that the deceased had served at Rubira Church of Uganda for only six months.

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Police, led by Joseph Bakalele, Kabale District Police Commander, in conjunction with locals, retrieved the deceased’s body and took it to Kabale Regional Referral Hospital for postmortem. The deceased’s body had heavy bruises on the face and visible blood stains, which the police suspected indicated that he was beaten and killed before being dumped in the waters.

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