Thousands of Ugandans turned out today for the official state funeral of the country’s founding father and two-time president, Milton Obote. The managing editor of the daily Monitor newspaper in Kampala, Peter Mwesige, says it was attended by government officials, political supporters and relatives of the former leader. But he told VOA reporter Shaka Ssali that Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni was not there.
The day was not declared a national public holiday, which to some is a source of controversy. Dr. Obote’s coffin is now on a tour of several Ugandan towns.
On Monday he will be buried at his ancestral home in northern Uganda. The 81-year-old leader died of kidney failure in South Africa last week. He was toppled from power in 1985 and spent the rest of his life in exile in Zambia.