The Minister of Health, Hon. Jane Ruth Aceng has revealed that the immediate cause of death of the former Speaker Jacob L’Okori Oulanyah, was multiple organ failure.
“The heart, lungs, liver and kidney all failed. The liver started failing while he was in Uganda and the lungs had started collecting fluids,” she said.
The Minister made this revelation while presenting a report on Oulanyah’s health at the special sitting of the House to honour the former speaker on Tuesday, 05 April 2022.
Aceng said that Oulanyah was diagnosed with cancer in 2019.
“He discovered a swelling on the neck, he took it upon himself to seek medical attention in Germany, where the swelling was removed and analyzed and he was told that it was cancer, she said adding that, ’he was started on treatment which he finished at the Uganda Cancer Institute’.
She added that he subsequently visited other hospitals over the same but due to the challenges during the lockdown and during elections, he was not able to be treated in hospital.
“On 23 January 2022, he was admitted to Mulago for two weeks and during that time, he was being prepared to travel to get gene therapy treatment known as the CAR T- Cell which did not require more chemotherapy which had already supressed the bone marrow,” she said.
Aceng added that tests were carried out, biopsy tissues recalled for further analysis and the bone marrow analysed.
The Minister in her report added that Oulanyah also developed multiple bacterial and viral infections.
“The treatment of the viral infections continued to suppress the bone marrow, which lead to its total suppression,” she said.
There were also contributory conditions which included a lymphatic system depletion.
Aceng also revealed that while in Makerere, Oulanyah lost his spleen following a student strike there. She said that the manufactures both the red and white blood cells.
“He started having gastritis bleeding into the abdomen because of the lack of platelets and we couldn’t stop the bleeding. He also had drug resistant bacteria, which is usually hospital acquired when you stay long in the Hospital,” she added.