Gunfire echoed through Ibanda municipality on a fateful Wednesday evening, as police intervened to disperse agitated Christians attempting to vandalize Depths Ministries Church in Kafunjo cell, Bufunda Division. The chaos ensued following the tragic death of Scovia Akankunda, who reportedly took her own life within the church premises. Her act of desperation was allegedly linked to the non-repayment of Shillings 16 million she had lent to Pastor Daniel Bukenya.
According to Colman Mulonde, the LC I Chairperson of Kafunjo cell, Akankunda had been persistently seeking the return of the borrowed sum since she entrusted it to Pastor Bukenya in July. The understanding was for the pastor to repay within two months. Mulonde revealed that Akankunda, a regular attendee of prayers at Depths Ministries, resorted to suicide by ingesting poison when the pastor failed to honor his commitment.
The demonstrators, comprised mainly of fellow churchgoers, demanded swift action against Depths Ministries Church for alleged noise pollution and urged authorities to address the serious accusations directed at Pastor Bukenya. Emily Musiimenta, a vendor at Ssaza Market, claimed that the pastor had been soliciting money from women in the market, promising spiritual services to remove curses and protect their businesses.
Despite their intentions to vent their anger by vandalizing the church, the protesters were met with resistance from the police. Live bullets and teargas were employed to disperse the agitated crowd. Samson Kasasira, the Rwizi Region Police spokesperson, informed URN that efforts are underway to locate Pastor Bukenya, while investigations into the circumstances surrounding Akankunda’s death continue.
The deceased’s body currently rests at Ruhoko Health Center IV, pending a postmortem examination to ascertain whether poison was indeed the cause of Akankunda’s tragic end.