By Carol Kasujja
Tears, clouds of emotion and excruciating pain is what best describes the events at Haji Yusuf Matovu’s(known as Youma) ancestral home in Busikiri village in Wakiso district as thousands of mourners, including friends and family members, turned up to pay their last respect to Hafiz Ndawula Kalema aka Olavi, who died in a boat cruise on Sunday.
At the home, women and men, faces contorted in deep thought, sat on mats listening to speaker after another describing how Olavi was a blessing to his family and friends.
Muslims says prayers for the late Ndawula. All photos/Roderick Ahimbazwe
Many described him as a prayerful, cheerful, down-to-earth, listening, humble, hardworking man who loved people.
“I was in Masajja when I received the sad news, I could not believe that Olavi was dead; he was a strong man who knew how to deal with all kinds of people,” said Ibrahim Kibirige of Hotel Africana.
Kibirige noted that what hurts is that Olavi died without a child. “Why are we losing our children in funny and weird ways?” he asked.
CDF Gen. Katumba Wamala arrives for the burial ceremony
In a moving narration, his father told mourners how death has robbed him of a friend, brother and the pillar of the family.
He extended his condolences to all people who lost their loved ones in the Malaysian plane because now he knows what it means.
“It is painful to bury your child. Olavi has left a big gap in the family. Recently, I went with him to South Africa for a business training, but while studying, I got bored and told him to continue with the training and get all the skills.
He finished the training and told me that he was going to share with me everything he had learnt so that we open up a business, unfournately, he has died with all the information without sharing the ideas and that is the end of the business plan we were to start,” he narrated.
He added: “When his body was found, I did not want to look at it; my wife Mariam called me and told me that he could hardly recognize Olavi.
I almost abused her but I prayed to God to strengthen me. Eventually I looked at his body and I know he has gone to be with Allah."
Matovu noted that he has been so close to his son that they had promised each other to be each one’s next of kin.
In his message, Supreme Mufti Sheikh Zubair Kayongo advised Youma to trust God because he is a trying moment when God is testing his faith.
“Do not think otherwise of your son’s death, it is the lord who took him,” he said.