Billionaire Aponye perishes in Car accident days after son’s wedding

Man Jose Kayima

Renowned businessman, Apollo Nyegamehe, popularly known as Aponye died Thursday evening after the car in which he was travelling rammed into a stationary lorry along Mbarara-Kabale highway in Ntungamo District. His driver and two other occupants were rushed to Itojo hospital for treatment.

Apollo Nyegamahe, aka Aponye, a self-made billionaire philanthropist who started as a wheelbarrow pusher in Kabale and became a household name in the country, died last evening in a motor crash.

He was in his 60s and his death happened days after son’s wedding that was held last Saturday.

Aponye died on the spot after his vehicle hit a stationed lorry on Kabale-Mbarara highway on his way to Rukiga District at around 9:30pm.

He was driving to his home village, Kigo in Muhanga Town Council for the burial of a Prisons driver who died on Wednesday in another road accident in Mpigi District.

The accident which was confirmed by Rwizi Region Police Commander Wisley Enganizi is reported to have happened at Itojo weekly market, about 200 meters from Itojo Hospital.

“The preliminary reports indicate that Aponye is dead but my police officers are on ground. So, I’m waiting for the detailed report,” Enganizi told Monitor .
Witnesses say the deceased was travelling in a V8 Land cruiser, registration number UBF300Z.

There was a parked lorry that got a mechanical problem and was parked in the road in the same direction where Aponye was coming from but there were no signs like reflectors warning other road users,” Mr Savimbi Savimbi, a witness, said.

He said the deceased was travelling with four people in the vehicle who sustained injuries and were rushed to Itojo hospital.

Apollo was born in Muhanga Town Council, Rukiga District, where he grew up and started engaging in business in the early 80s.

He has since become a billionaire and his business ventures, managed through company name, Aponye Uganda Limited, include Aponye Mall in Kampala, Mega Standard Supermarket as well as Aponye Hotel located on Ben Kiwanuka Street, among other investments. Aponye Uganda Limited also produces Apo soap, Kitamu cooking oil and Ugali maize flour. It also have fleet of trailers that park at Nalukolongo in Kampala.

He established Panto Bar and made a lot of money from smuggling goods to the Republic of Rwanda. He was in coffee, beans and maize businesses during Milton Obote’s regime while supplying merchandise to Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and other countries. Aponye is one of the biggest grain suppliers to the World Food Programme, Prime minister’s office, Police, Prisons and East African region.

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