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Who was Brenda Nantongo? The truth and depth about Gen. Katumba’s slain daughter

A Photo Collage showing Brenda Nantongo and his dad Gen. Katumba Wamala. The former was killed by gunmen in Kampala on Tuesday

Relatives and friends have described Brenda Nantongo, fondly called Bri, as a down-to-earth young woman, who was a source of warmth and laughter to all who crossed her path.

The 32-year-old daughter of former army commander Gen Katumba Wamala died on the spot when the car she was travelling in with her father, driver and bodyguard was riddled with bullets by gunmen riding on two motorcycles on the Kisota-Kulambiro road in Kampala yesterday.

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Family members say Ms Brenda returned from the US, where she pursued a Master in Public Health from Savanah University in Atlanta.

She then took up a job at the army hospital in Bombo, where she worked until yesterday.

“Her father asked her to come back after her masters in the US,” a relative who preferred anonymity, said.

Brenda (R) was most recently seen in company of his father during the recently concluded swearing-in ceremony of Members of Parliament.

Nantogo is said to have been the darling of the family and had a special bond with her father.

She was seen in his company during the recently concluded swearing-in ceremony of Members of Parliament.

Ms Catherine Katumba, the deceased’s mother, described her as a “lovely friend” whose life was snatched at a prime age.
The fourth of six siblings had been living with her parents in Bulabira, Wakiso District.

Ms Lydia Nakkazi, a housekeeper at the Katumba home, said Brenda was devastated by her grandmother’s death when she left home on Tuesday morning.

Away from the loss, Ms Nakkazi says Brenda was a down-to-earth and amiable person who treated all people with respect and courtesy.

“She loved to cook for her parents. Before she left this morning [yesterday], she asked me to remove fish from the freezer so that she could prepare it for daddy [Gen Katumba] when they returned from the vigil. Whenever she was home, she would ensure everyone is catered for,” Ms Nakkazzi said.

Ms Diana Katumba, Brenda’s elder sister, described her as one who “made home lively. She brought life at home. She was also very open. She would say something as blank as she liked.”

Diana had spoken to her sister in the early hours of Tuesday and she was to pick money to cater for some of the needs for their grandmother’s vigil before the gruesome incident.

“A very big gap has been left, we were six but now we are five,” she said.

Ms Brenda will be laid to rest on June 3 at 2pm in Kikandwa village, Mukono District.

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