Uganda has flown flags half-mast to honour the memory of the Internal Affairs minister, Gen Aronda Nyakairima.
Half-mast is flying a flag below the summit of the mast on a ship.
According to term “half-staff” is used when referring to a flag flying below the summit on a pole.
In many countries this is seen as a symbol of respect, mourning, or distress.
The tradition of flying the flag at half-mast began in the 17th century.
According to some sources, the flag is lowered to make room for an “invisible flag of death” flying above.
When hoisting a flag that is to be displayed at half-mast, it should be hoisted to the finial for an instant, then lowered to half-mast.
Likewise, when the flag is lowered at the end of the day, it is to be hoisted to the finial for an instant, and then lowered.
The Uganda flag is flown at half-mast during national mourning days.
It is also flown at half-mast when an important person has died declared by parliament.
The Ugandan flag was flown at half-mast following the death of Eriya Kategeya, the First Deputy Prime Minister and minister for East African Affairs in 2013 and after the Al Shabaab bombings in Kampala that killed 76 people in 2010.
Parliament has called Members for a special sitting scheduled for Thursday at 2pm to honour the memory of the late.
Army spokesperson, Lt Col Paddy Ankunda, confirmed the development saying Aronda was his personal hero.
“Flags fly at half-mast,” Ankunda said, adding, “Aronda my hero”.
Ankunda said Gen Aronda will be laid to rest on Saturday 19th September 2015 at Nyakiju in Rukungiri district.
His requim mass will start at 9am.
“It is now confirmed, the body of Gen Aronda will touch down at 1pm aboard Emirates on Wednesday,” he announced.
Prayers for Aronda’s soul will take place at Kololo grounds on Friday starting 9am.
A condolence book has been opened at Kololo for the public.
President Yoweri Museveni Monday visited the family of the late at his home in Buziga along Ggaba road.
He hailed Aronda for helping with the Identity card Project saying it was stuck but he moved it.
“He has made his contribution. It was an untimely death at 56 years.”
Museveni also hailed Aronda for helping rebuild UPDF saying his death was a loss.