Vendors pictured in Nakawa market recently. PHOTO | FILE
By Elizabeth Kamurungi
An emergency response team from the Ministry of Health yesterday picked a body of 55-year-old vendor who died under mysterious circumstances in Nakawa Market.
A statement by Kampala Metropolitan Deputy police spokesperson, Mr Luke Owoyesigyire, indicated that Hadijjah Nakyanzi’s body was yesterday morning found in her shop.
“The police at Jinja Road have registered a sudden death of Nakyanzi, 55, a resident of Salaama, Makindye Division. The incident took place today at Nakawa Market in shop 118. The police at Nakawa was informed about it [incident] and they consequently informed the Ministry of Health team which safely removed the body,” the statement by Mr Owoyesigyire reads in part.
According to traders in Nakawa, Nakyanzi who dealt in groceries, cereals and other merchandise had been sleeping in the market since June 18 when President Museveni instituted a 42-day nationwide lockdown to curb the spread of Covid-19.
The President has previously urged vendors to sleep in the markets to avoid the risk of transmitting the virus to their families.
With public transport banned and a 7pm curfew in place, it is also difficult for many to commute. Advertisement
Mr Joseph Rudasi, the chairperson of Nakawa market, told Daily Monitor that the vendor’s body was found by a young man who usually opens the stores.
He added that he was informed about the incident shortly before 6am.
“I spoke to her at around 7pm yesterday [Tuesday] just before she went to sleep in her shop. She had previously told me that she had diabetes and high blood pressure and since she could not move, her brother would bring her the medication,” he said.
Nakyanzi was reportedly bleeding from the nose and struggled to get out of her store, before falling on the doorway.
By press time, the cause of Nakyanzi’s death was yet to be established and her body had been taken to Kampala Capital City Authority mortuary at Mulago.
Family and police have, however, offered contradicting accounts of the deceased’s health.
According to the police statement, Nakyanzi had lived with underlying conditions including diabetes.
But Ms Madina Nakyeyune, the deceased’s sister, said Nakyanzi was 59 years-old and had no known underlying conditions, except for pressure and anxiety of the prevailing circumstances.
“We grew up together and she had no chronic diseases. She had spent nearly two weeks sleeping at Nakawa. I spoke with her yesterday and she was fine. She was even fasting. She has not been sick. Maybe the pressure from what is going on,” Ms Madina said.
She added: “She was happy yesterday. She was eating, breaking her fast. She sounded happy, lively.”
When Daily Monitor visited the home, the two sisters co-owned, mourners had started gathering as burial arrangements remained dependent on a post-mortem report by police.
Source Daily Monitor.