Kampala- Renowned pathologist, Dr Sylvester Onzivua, has said his arrest while trying to carry out a postmortem of Butaleja Woman MP, Cerinah Nebanda, was caused by his refusal to honour a proposal by a senior government official to have the samples taken to UK instead of South Africa as had been suggested by Parliament.
Dr Onzivua while speaking at Federal of Uganda Women Lawyers’ workshop on Sexual Based Gender Violence (SGBV) on Saturday in Kampala, said a senior government official called him a few hours to his planned flight to South Africa insisting that the samples should be taken to UK because that could come along with a huge allowance.
“I know many people have been curious on what really happened during MP Nebanda’s postmortem. You will not believe, one colleague called me and said that we needed to take the samples to London. I asked him why? He said: ‘you man, don’t you know it is Christmas season and we need per diem?” Dr Onzivua said without disclosing the name of the official.
He added: “When I refused, they crafted a story that I was intending to bring results pinning government on her death. They used a directive to have me arrested. I was taken to court but the case could not be sustained because it had no evidence.”
MP Nebanda died in December 2012 and her sudden death sparked political tantrum as a section of politicians and public believed there was foul play in her death.
Dr Onzivua said he proposed to take MP Nebanda’s samples to South Africa based on experience where a person had died in Luzira and examination by government chemist revealed there was no poison but results from South Africa said the reverse.
However, government and then Inspector General of Police, Gen Kale Kayihura, attributed Nebandah’s death to drugs.
Dr Onzivua said police investigators, nurses and clinicians are to blame for the low prosecution rates of SGBV perpetrators because they do not have basic law and forensic knowledge.