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Uganda Investigating Death of Prominent Army Officer

Ugandan officials say they are investigating whether the death of a prominent military official this week was caused by poison.

The country's defense minister, Crispus Kiyonga, said Thursday that Brigadier Noble Mayombo died of multiple organ failure triggered by pancreatitis.

But the minister said the government wants to know definitively what brought on the illness. He said many things can cause pancreatitis, including a viral or bacterial infection, alcohol or poisoning.

Government officials say Mayombo first fell ill last Thursday. He was treated at two Ugandan hospitals before being transferred by presidential jet to Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi, where he died Tuesday. He was 42-years-old.

Mayombo was considered a rising star in Ugandan politics and a possible successor to President Yoweri Museveni. Mr. Museveni, 63, has ruled Uganda since overthrowing dictator Milton Obote in 1986.

The defense minister said Mayombo will be given a state funeral.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.