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Sigalame rugby15s player given heroic send-off

Saturday March 21 2020
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Sigalame High School students carry the casket of the late Eliakim Oundo, who succumbed to injuries after a collision during the Busia Secondary Schools Term One Games on March 14, 2020. PHOTO | GAITANO PESSA |

By GAITANO PESSA

Hundreds of mourners on Saturday attended the funeral of Sigalame High School rugby 15s player, Eliakim Oundo at Rakite village in Matayos sub county, Busia, with speakers paying a glowing tribute to the deceased as a disciplined and hardworking boy.

Oundo, a Form Three student, succumbed to head injuries after a collision during the Busia County Secondary School Term One Games last Saturday.

In an emotional tribute, his mother, Everlyne Olima, said throughout his lifetime, he loved art and sports taking part in football, before he flexed his muscles in rugby.

“He believed in the saying, Mtegemea cha nduguye hufa maskini andall he wanted was to be able to stand on his own. He loved his school Sigalame and was patriotic to school motto, Soma Ujitegemee,” she said of the staunch Chelsea supporter.

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Sigalame High School Boys' band performs at the funeral of the late Eliakim Oundo, who succumbed to injuries after a collision during the Busia County Secondary Schools Term One Games on March 14, 2020. PHOTO | GAITANO PESSA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Olima added that his son took academics seriously, loved jokes and always made the room lively whenever he was around.

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“He loved nature and due to this, he grew trees and flowers in his compound."

His rugby coach, Lawrence Alando, described him as a hardworking player, who gave his all whenever he was called upon to defend the Sigalame badge during school competitions.

His teammates performed the ‘haka’ during the service.

Sigalame High school popular brass band also took charge of dirges and hymns for their fallen colleague, before the a brief funeral service, which lasted less than 30 minutes inline with the directive by the ministry of health on prevention of Coronavirus, was conducted by the area catholic church.

Oundo was injured during a play-off match with Nambale at St Mathias Boys in Busia on March 13 and was then rushed to Busia County Referral Hospital.

On arrival, he was assessed and it was discovered that he had a skull fracture that caused head haemorrhage.

He was then transferred to Lifecare Hospital in Bungoma and later to Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital (MTRH) in Eldoret, where he passed on at 12:15 am on the next day aged 18.

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