Thirty-five days before his new album launch, Ugandaâ€™s king of baritone, Jimmy Katumba, 51, passed away.
Katumba died on Sunday at Mengo hospital of peptic ulcers. Close sources said he was also diagnosed with kidney and liver problems.
Katumba was to launch a new album, comprising redone versions of his old songs, on September 16. He had been battling with peptic ulcers for 30 years and was taken to hospital for immediate surgery on July 13.
According to Aisha Ahmad, Katumbaâ€™s friend, â€œhe was strong and doing well. He was supposed to be discharged on August 7, 2006 but the doctors decided to carry out a thorough examination after he developed swollen feet.
â€œYesterday (Sunday), he could not recognise anyone. He asked me to bring him food but when I took it to him, he denied having requested for it.â€
Katumba started his music career as an eight-year-old singer in Mukono church of Uganda where his father, the Rev. Blaiso Katumba, was a preacher.
In 1977, he formed the Light Bearers, which he renamed Jimmy Katumba and the Ebonies.
Popularly known for his baritone voice, Katumba became celebrated for songs like Twalina Omukwano, Drums of Africa and Fa Kukyolina. He left for the UK in 1990. He went to the United States in 1992 and returned in 1995.
He will be buried in Kakajjo, Bweyogerere
Jimmy Katumba dead