Shock as a Cleric dies while leading burial ceremony

Shock as a Cleric dies while leading burial ceremony

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Teso, Northern Uganda — Teso region is mourning the death of the Rev. Venerable George Robert Okodu, the Archdeacon of Kapelebyong Church of Uganda in Soroti Diocese.

Okodu, 54, was leading a burial service in Odusai village, Kobuin parish in Kapelebyong district, when he collapsed and was pronounced dead upon arrival at Amuria General Hospital. He died Thursday.

David Ewayu, the councillor representing Kuju sub-county in Amuria, said Okodu collapsed near the grave as he opened the bible during the burial of a one Nelson Akulau.

Before he was promoted to head the archdeaconry in January this year, Okodu was serving as the parish priest of Alere in Willa sub-county, Amuria district.

In Kapelebyong archdeaconry, Okodu replaced the Rev. Can. Richard Patrick Odulai, who was transferred to Kalaki Archdeaconry, as an archdeacon.

Dominic Aojan, the councillor representing Akoromit sub-county, said Okodu looked fine when he arrived for the burial service, adding that the reverend had just delivered a sermon on repentance and good governance.

In a bizzare twist of events, the ambulance which carried the body of Akulau rushed Okodu to Amuria Hospital, where he breathed his last upon arrival.

Aojan said Okodu was a strong pillar in advocating peace, education and good governance in the Teso region.

“Before his death, he preached to the mourners, saying: “For one to go to heaven, they should have put on the white clothes”,” Ewayu said.

Rev. Samuel Ediau, the diocesan secretary in Soroti, said the passing of Okodu was a big loss to the church and the entire community of Teso. Amuria district health officer, Dr. Nick Okwii, who received Okodu at Amuria Hospital, said he died before reaching the hospital.

One of the key leaders of the church who preferred anonymity said the family members did not request for a postmortem to be carried out on the body of Okodu.

The executive director of the Public Affairs Centre (PAC)- Uganda, Benson Ekwee Ocen, described Okodu as the modern-day ‘Prophet Nathan’, who rebuked politicians, religious leaders, including the army officers without fear or favour.

Fisheries state minister Hellen Adoa described the late as a jolly man.

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