MOURNERS LIMITED

Fast Covid send-off for Homa Bay official Aluoch

Died of Covid-19, ceremony was fast, mourners few for well-known journalist

In Summary

• The ceremony in Asumbi, Rangwe constituency, was presided over by a priest from Asumbi Catholic Church. The burial was rushed due to the Aluoch's Covid status and the pandemic.

• Beryl said Aluoch struggled with breathing before his death, said family was shocked.

 

Homa Bay director of communications Maurice Juma Aluoch buried in Asumbi, Rangwe, on November 19.
Homa Bay director of communications Maurice Juma Aluoch buried in Asumbi, Rangwe, on November 19.
Image: ROBERT OMOLLO

@robertomollo3

Homa Bay county director of communications Maurice Juma Aluoch was on Thursday buried at his home in Asumbi, Rangwe constituency. He died of Covid-19.

He had complained of breathing problems and the county health director said he died of an ailment related to Covid-19.

 

The private burial was swift, attended by family members and a battery of journalists who honoured the veteran newsman.

The ceremony was presided over by a priest from Asumbi Catholic Church. It was conducted hurriedly due to Covid-19 protocols.

It took place within two hours after the body was removed from a private mortuary in Kirindo, Mbita subcounty.

Homa Bay county commissioner Moses Lilan had ordered security officers to limit the the number of people at the burial.

Aluoch died on November 9, after he developed difficulty in breathing at the ICU in Homa Bay County Referral Hospital.

Health executive Richard Muga said Aluoch died of an ailment related to Covid-19. 

“Security officers are hereby directed to limit the number of people who will attend the venue for church and burial services to avoid any flouting of Covid-19 protocols,” Lilan said.

 

Due to the directive, the family members held a private prayer session at the graveside before burial.

His wives Susan and Beryl described Aluoch as a responsible husband.

“We had never slept hungry even during hard times. He would struggle and ensure there was food on the table,” Susan said.

Beryl, who was with him when he died, said he struggled with breathing and called his death a shock.

“Death came and grabbed my husband very fast. It happened before the information about his sickness reached all family members,” she said.

In his message of condolence read by political adviser Isaiah Alaka, Governor Cyprian Awiti described Aluoch as a true friend. 

“I knew him before I joined politics. His death is a big loss to me and Homa Bay people. We pay tribute to his life,” Awiti said. 

Before joining the county government, Aluoch worked with the Kenya Times, Ramogi FM and Daily Nation as a correspondent in Homa Bay.

He was 62. He is survived by his widows and nine children.

 

(Edited by V. Graham)