The daughter of the man who died of coronavirus, whose coffin was broken open by mourners before the funeral, has spoken out about the incident.
The daughter of the man who died of coronavirus, but the coffin was opened by mourners before the funeral, has spoken out about the incident.
This week, a video went viral showing mourners grabbing the casket before the funeral and forcibly opening it to determine the contents.
Many have since concluded that the casket was empty and castigated the health ministry for it.
Immaculate Masika told Nile Post that the incident occurred in Bwisa village in Bwera sub-county in Kasese district following the death of her father Franco Bwambale Kabwangana, who was also LC 1 chairman.
“He was suffering from diabetes and was admitted to Bwera hospital on June 8, 2021 before being referred to Mbarara hospital two days later on June 10, 2021,” Masika said.
She noted that the family preferred to take their father to Mayanja Memorial Hospital, where he was tested for coronavirus and found to be positive.
“He died three days later at the hospital. Since he tested positive at the time of his death, we were alerted as a family along with Bwera Hospital to prepare a professional funeral.”
The deceased’s daughter said the funeral team from the district that brought the body included people who did not know the mourners in the village, which led to chaos, especially by youths and drunkards who demanded that the coffin be forcibly opened to determine if Kabwangana’s body was inside.
According to Masika, this is where the chaos began and the coffin was snatched from the funeral team. It was later confirmed that the body of the deceased was inside the coffin.
“When they opened the coffin, they found that the body had not been wrapped properly. However, they confirmed that the body was there,” she said.
She added that police later intervened and the burial was carried out, but dismissed reports on social media that the coffin was empty.
However, according to Health Ministry guidelines, only designated funeral teams are allowed to touch the body of a person who has died of covid, contrary to what happened in the scene captured in the viral video.
Many of the health Standard Operating Procedures such as social distancing, wearing masks and funeral being attended by more than 20 people.