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How billionaire Aponye perished in Ntungamo road crash

Ssekanjako Deus



What you need to know:

  • At his son’s wedding on Saturday, Aponye is reported to have said: “Now that Peter has wed, if I die, I will definitely go to heaven.”  

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.

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.

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“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 Kampala Media TV


Witnesses say the deceased was travelling in a V8 Land cruiser, registration number UBF300Z.

A traffic policewoman takes a picture of the truck which billionaire Apollo Nyegamahe’s vehicle rammed into on July 6, 2023. PHOTO/PEREZ RUMANZI

Parked lorry
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.

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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.

Apollo Nyegamahe, aka Aponye

Aponye, who was also the NRM chairman for Rukiga District, didn’t pursue formal education, but died an achiever according to Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa.

“All I can say is that we are shattered. Aponye was an example that with determination and perseverance, one can make it. We have lost a pillar,” Tayebwa told Monitor last evening.


At his son’s wedding on Saturday, Aponye is reported to have said: “Now that Peter has wed, if I die, I will definitely go to heaven.”    

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By press time, his body was still at Itojo hospital pending postmortem.

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