Former Archbishop of Church of Uganda Livingstone Mpalanyi Nkoyoyo has been laid to rest at the Namugongo Martyrs Anglican Shrine.
Rather than harbour a sombre mood, the state funeral of Nkoyoyo carried a general air of celebration of a man described in glowing terms.
Buganda Kingdom prime minister Charles Peter Mayiga said successful people should not be mourned when they die, but rather be celebrated.
Nkoyoyo, 79, was fittingly laid to rest at the Uganda Martyrs Museum, Namugongo.
Bishop Kityo Luwalira of Namirembe Diocese, who led the prayers at the final sendoff on Tuesday, told mourners that Nkoyoyo “had a special connection with Namugongo” and that he had committed to building the Uganda Martyrs Museum at Namugongo.
After the funeral service at around 3:30pm local time, the Uganda flag-draped casket carrying Nkoyoyo’s remains was gently wheeled to the burial site, with the Uganda Police band leading the processing. Members of the clergy and other mourners followed, softly singing hymns.
Once at the site, a prayer was held, after which the hymn Amazze Omulimo Gwe was sang as the coffin was lowered into the grave.
Archbishop Stanley Ntagali then led the mourners into prayers at the burial site.
During his funeral, speakers said Nkoyoyo always emphasized the virtue of keeping time. They also hailed the former archbishop for being development-minded and down to earth.
Former army commander and now state minister for Works Edward Katumba Wamala described Nkoyoyo as a hardworking person, who once lectured him about investment.
Ntagali said the fallen cleric was a mentor for many in the Church, including himself. “We are celebrating the life of a great man who has been called by his creator.”
“The man we are say farewell today was not only a blessing to his family, but also to the Church and to the nation.”
Kityo Luwalira said Nkoyoyo was a peaceful and humble servant of God, “who devoted all his life to the ministry of the Lord and the service of humanity”. He said he was a preacher full of “strength and charisma”.
Archbishop Dr Cyprian Kizito Lwanga described Nkoyoyo as an exemplary prelate, who personified the Christian virtues of faith, hope and charity. He said Nkoyoyo worked to see everyone around him climb out of poverty.
The Kabaka, Ronald Muwenda Mutebi, praised the late cleric for loving the kindgom and for giving moral and material support towards its revival.
The Mufti of Uganda, Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubajje, represented the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU) at the final sendoff of Nkoyoyo and applauded the late for being among those that started IRCU.
The chairperson of the House of Clergy, Rev. Canon Nelson Kaweesa, said all clergy in the country have lost a “special friend” who preached hard work, patience and resilience.
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