Veteran journalist Teddy Sseezi Cheeye and publisher of Uganda Confidential, a news magazine, was yesterday reportedly knocked dead by a speeding boda boda as he took a walk in Nakawa, Kampala suburb.
Kampala Metropolitan traffic police commander Israel Wambesyo and Cheeye’s daughter Laura Sseezi, confirmed that Cheeye, 59, was knocked down yesterday afternoon.
“I have got that information from officers on the ground and we are now gathering an account of the accident which we shall give to the media,” Mr Wambesyo said.
Cheeye, who was also former head of economic monitoring in the Internal Security Organisation (ISO), was released in March last year after spending close to seven years in jail over corruption charges.
He was jailed on April 8, 2009 when he was convicted of embezzlement of Global Fund money amounting to Shs120 million.
Shocked by the sudden death of Cheeye, Uganda Prisons Service spokesperson, Mr Frank Baine, described him as one of the most brilliant inmates he has ever dealt with.
“It is so sad, what can I say about Seezi? He is one of the most brilliant and outspoken inmates that I have ever dealt with. He held very serious debates with fellow inmates and staff, he was always disciplined and he served his sentence and went away,” Mr Baine said.
During an interview with Daily Monitor in April last year after serving his sentence, Cheeye described his life in prison as humbling.
“The greatest lesson is that prison is a continuation of one’s life when he is out. If one was a thief, he continues. If he was an academician, he continues that way but you are also not cut out and you remain part of society. Some people get better, others worse,” Cheeye told this newspaper last year.
The Minister of Information, Mr Frank Tumwebaze, said he was saddened by the news.
“I didn’t know Cheeye that closely but it is so sad that he has passed on. All I can say is that I feel sorry for the family and I am sure he will be missed so much,” Mr Tumwebaze said briefly.
A United Nations special report released on Tuesday about safety on Ugandan roads, show that at least 10 people die daily on Kampala roads due to boda boda accidents.
A fortnight ago, this newspaper published a story where records at traffic police data centre showed that at least 7,000 people lost their lives in boda boda accidents in three years.
Cheeye rose to fame as Editor-in-Chief of the Uganda Confidential, a weekly newsletter known for its investigation into crime and fraud by government officials.