Entertainment
Bitama burial on hold over paternity dispute
Publish Date: Jan 13, 2014
newvision
  • mail
  • img

By Moses Walubiri and Ashraf Kasirye

The final sendoff of fallen comedian Paddy Ssali, popularly known as Paddy Bitama will not take place until a paternity wrangle is resolved.

Two families are currently locked in a dispute over the paternity of Bitama.

One of the family heads, Peter Kasozi, called police to take the body from National Theatre were it was lying for artistes to pay their last respects to Mulago Mortuary to carry out a DNA test.

However, Monday afternoon as police was carrying out a DNA test between Richard SSali, the elder brother from the Tamale Ssali family, other relatives were exchanging bitter fights.

Bitama passed on Saturday afternoon after a protracted battle with skin cancer.

A trail blazer in stand-up comedy with the Amarula Family, Bitama, according to Dr. Henry Dungu, died nine days after his admission at Mulago Cancer Institute.

Following a routine medical follow-up, doctors at the cancer institute deemed it prudent to have Bitama admitted after diagnosing him with anaemia and general body dehydration.

“Bitama has caught us off guard with his passing,” Dr. Dungu said on Saturday, reminiscing about how 20 minutes before his sudden death, Bitama asked him whether he was aware of swirling rumours of his death on the internet and FM stations.

Dungu says on his return after a short while, he found Bitama clasping his chest, with attempts by a team of doctors to resuscitate him coming to naught. 

Pastor Wilson Bugembe described Bitama as one of his “friends” and a parishioner at his church, describing witnessing his last moments as “overwhelming.” Bugembe had gone to visit Bitama when his situation suddenly deteriorated and he died.

Bitama’s death spread like a wild fire and within a few minutes, many musicians, artistes and comedians led by Amarula’s Allan Mujuni popularly known as Amooti Omubalanguzi descended at Mulago Cancer Institute.

Bitama’s journey to the top of comedy in Uganda has been as challenging as its humbling; at one time eking out a living as a waiter in a bar in Nansana, trying his hands on karaoke, before making a breakthrough as a presenter on Dembe FM.

Later, Bitama and his Amarula Family started a popular weekly comedy on WBS TV known as Side Mirror, which specialised in lampooning politicians and other celebrities.

In the 2006 presidential polls, Bitama took his comedy a notch higher when he unsuccessfully attempted to get registered as a candidate.

In a related development, a man claiming to be Bitama’s father yesterday lodged a complaint with Police at Nansana demanding for the deceased’s body for burial, or for Police to stay the burial until a DNA test to confirm paternity is carried out.

However, according to Division CIID for Wakiso, George Mpungu, the claimant, Peter Njegula Kasozi, was told to put his request in writing, which he had not done by press time yesterday.

“From what I have been told, the issue has been settled amicably because they have not returned,” Mpungu said when asked about the twist that could have derailed the burial arrangements.

Bitama’s known father, Tamale Ssali, died years back. A requiem mass at Bugembe’s church in Nansana yesterday was graced by hundreds of people, including politicians and fellow artistes.

“We shall greatly miss Paddy because he has literary been our shining light. He has been courageous. There is not a single office that he would not knock at if he wanted something,” Amooti Omubalanguzi said.

Sam Gombya, a musician, described Bitama as a “generous and humorous person” who had over the years became the face of comedy.

“He made Ugandans realize that one could actually make a successful career in comedy,” Gombya said.

Bitama will be buried this afternoon in Bbira, Mityana road.

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Amooti the confessed cheat!
Of course I feel a bit guilty but the most important thing is that I do it secretly, not openly. But I truly love my wife....
Big Brother Africa: Esther returns, bashes Bebe Cool
A man who is over 40 years old and all he does is bring negative energy surely has a problem. From calling Radio and Weasel cartoon and baboon to fights with Chameleone and Bobi Wine; why is it always him?...
South African Wine Festival returns
IT has been something of a long walk for the festival, which only had three wineries in 2010; to a high of 24 last year. About 15 are expected to participate this year...
Khalifah Aganaga shoots a new video Dance Disco
Khalifah Aganaga who sung Oyitangayo, Wanika omukono, Ekitangaza, Motto ye Kampala, Ndabirawa is soon releasing a new video called Dance Disco. For the past three years, he has been a musician and hoping to go internationally....
Big business a big threat to media freedom
The prevailing business oriented media houses are the biggest threat to journalistic freedom, even more than government legislation...
Big Brother Africa : Uganda’s Esther evicted and two more girls…
For all her craziness and wildness that had won her followers on various social media threads, they did not vote for her and Esther got evicted from the Big Brother Africa Hotshots Sunday evening....
Should diplomatic passports issued to ex-govt workers be with drawn?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter