Controversial Ugandan pastor shot in 'murder attempt'

File Picture: Badru Katumba/AFP

File Picture: Badru Katumba/AFP

Published Jan 3, 2024


Kampala, Uganda - An influential Ugandan pastor and outspoken supporter of President Yoweri Museveni was hospitalised after a shooting attack that killed his bodyguard, police said Wednesday.

Aloysius Bugingo was shot on Tuesday evening when "unidentified assailants opened fire on (his) vehicle... before swiftly escaping the scene on a motorcycle," said Ugandan police.

They said an investigation had been launched into "the attempted murder of Pastor Aloysius Bugingo... and the unfortunate killing of his bodyguard, Muhumuza Richard."

Muhoozi Kainerugaba, the son of Museveni, who is seen as the president's potential successor, said he had spoken with "our strong supporter," Bugingo, adding, "and he is well".

"He got slightly wounded in his left shoulder," he posted on X, formerly Twitter, calling the attack "heinous".

Bugingo is a controversial figure in Uganda, where he is head of the House of Prayer Ministries, one of the most influential Pentecostal churches in the religious East African country.

He also has his own television and radio channels, which he uses to give unconditional support for Museveni, who has ruled Uganda since 1986.

"Despite sustaining injuries during the attack, Pastor Aloysius Bugingo managed to transport the vehicle to Mulago Hospital," police added.

"Regrettably, his bodyguard, Muhumuza Richard, succumbed to the assault and was confirmed dead upon arrival at the hospital."

They said Bugingo was "undergoing medical treatment and is under close monitoring."

Bugingo's support for the president, and more recently Kainerugaba, too, regularly attracts wrath from the opposition, which the pastor in turn openly criticises in sermons.