KASESE, UGANDA: The number of deaths in the June 16 attack on Mpondwe-Lhubiriha SS in Kasese by suspected rebels of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) has risen to 43 after the latest victim was confirmed on Tuesday week.
Felestus Mbambu, a member from within the community succumbed to injuries at Bwera General Hospital on Tuesday after she was hit with a hammer by the attackers and left lying unconscious and profusely bleeding in her compound.
Dr Clarence Bwambale, the Bwera Hospital administrator, said the deceased had been in the intensive care unit in critical condition since the time of admission on Saturday but died at 3:30 pm on Tuesday afternoon.
“She died at 3:30 pm and the family took her body for burial,” Dr Bwambale said, adding that; “three people, who were brought in critical condition, have since passed on.”
“On Saturday, two people who were brought here in critical condition died and another one was referred to Mulago in Kampala,” he said.
According to Dr Bwambale’s report, it implies that the hospital remains with only one patient identified as Godwin Mumbere, aged 18, who was shot in the hand by the attackers. He is steadily improving, according to health workers.
Mbabu’s husband, Zakayo Duduma Masereka, and her mother-in-law, Florence Masika were also among those who died in the Friday night attack.
On Friday, June 16, 2023, at around 11 pm, a group of unknown assailants suspected to be members of the deadly ADF rebel camp raided Mpondwe-Lhubiriha SS and hacked to death 20 girls, before setting on fire the boy’s dormitory which left 17 dead and a few survivors.
In total, the assailants killed 37 of the 63 students believed to be at the school at the time of the attack.
Security also said that six students were injured and several others to be over 16 were taken as hostages by the rebels.
However, in an update on Wednesday, UPDF Spokesperson, Brig Felix Kulayigye said three of the abducted individuals who are students managed to escape from captivity and are now in the safe hands of the army.
“It’s true three students escaped from ADF rebels, they had crossed to DR Congo and this was because of much pressure mounted on them by UPDF soldiers,” he said, without offering details.
In a statement responding to the attack, President Museveni said the ADF rebels attacked the school purposely to divert the UPDF operations in eastern DRC and force them to withdraw troops, something they wouldn’t do.
Mr Museveni has since ordered the deployment of more troops on the Uganda-DR Congo border after the attack.