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Was Oklahoma native murdered in Uganda while working on investigative documentary?

New York Daily News
Jeff Rice (left) and Katheryne Fuller.
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OKLAHOMA CITY – The Washington-based Wayne Madsen Report investigative news blog is reporting today that the death of freelance television producer and Oklahoma native Jeff Rice at a swanky hotel in Kampala, Uganda, is likely linked to goons working within the dictatorial regime of U.S. supported leader Yoweri Museveni and that a cover-up is now underway.

Rice, 39, who has worked on The Amazing Race and Whale Wars reality shows is said to have been found on his hotel balcony, overlooking Lake Victoria, with blood pouring from his nose and mouth. Next to him was his unconscious assistant Katheryne Fuller. Reports are that while she is recovering, the authorities are holding her in Uganda and the police there may charge her with drug possession, according to the Daily Mail out of the United Kingdom.

Initial reports, however, said the duo was targeted by African gang members and subsequently poisoned, although the police are now discounting that scenario.

Rice, notes CNN.com, was a co-owner of SB Productions in Durban, South Africa, along with his wife Sally Blackman. The article also notes his love of the African people and how he was given the name Legnai, which means 'a gift from God,' by the Zulu people. Rice leaves behind two daughters, ages 7 and 2.

“Dictator-for-life” Yoweri Museveni, as we have previously reported, has been terrorizing government critics and journalists for some time now. Museveni has also made it known he has no use for homosexuals either and the anti-gay Ugandan tabloid media has been calling for the lynching of gays and lesbians while the Ugandan parliament tries to pass legislation that would impose the death penalty on those found to be homosexual. Those attitudes towards gays are believed to have been partly imported by The Family, the secretive, fundamentalist Christian group, linked to members of Congress, including conservative Oklahomans Inhofe and Sen. Tom Coburn. Inhofe has condemned the anti-gay legislation in recent months, but the attitudes among certain influential Ugandan parliamentarians, like David Bahati, remain.

So, under U.S.-friendly Museveni, a virtual reign of terror has gripped the east-central, Anglophone African nation and the U.S. government ignores the bad behavior of Museveni - or do they?

Last fall, President Barack Obama was criticized by this website for sending 100 U.S. "advisors” to Uganda in an alleged effort to put an end to the insurgent death cult, the Lord’s Resistance Army. Little has been said in the media since that time about the advisory mission, which was part of the “Lord’s Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act of 2009.” It is strongly supported by U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), the “Jesus guy” with a heart for the Ugandan people. As for the mission, Inhofe’s spokesman Jared Young told Red Dirt Report that Uganda is of “national strategic importance.”

So, if that’s true, did Jeff Rice get dispatched to Uganda not so much to work on an adventure-themed reality show or some other straightforward series but rather to uncover and film the dirty activities of the corrupt Museveni regime? Did U.S. (or corporate British) sources expose Rice’s true intentions and put him and his crew in mortal danger and then use a “cocaine overdose” as a convenient cover story? Regardless, the specific nature of his film project in Uganda remains unknown, although if the police report following Rice's death is to be believed, Rice and Fuller "had jetted into the country on Feb. 15, 2012 as an advance party to a larger team that were to film a documentary in Uganda in collaboration with Hope Medical Clinics Uganda, affiliated to Starley Hearing Foundation based in Minnesota USA which offers free hearing aids to hearing-impaired victims."

Red Dirt Report assumes the Ugandan police report meant to read "Starkey Hearing Foundation," which is the Eden Prairie, Minn.-based hearing aid company that has been working in rural Ugandan villages with the assistance of Oklahoma City-based Pros for Africa, which this website reported on back in August 2011. Students and professors from the University of Oklahoma, along with professional athletes, have been jetting over to Uganda over the past year or so with relative frequency to offer their time and skills with Pros for Africa.

CNN.com simply notes that Rice had planned to be in Uganda through mid-March.

Other mainline news and entertainment websites like E! Online is reporting that Rice reportedly died of a cocaine overdose, information which comes from Museveni’s henchmen within the Uganda Police Force.  Again, early reports regarding Rice’s death suggested “thugs” tried to rob and somehow poisoned the man and his assistant and perhaps a cameraman as well.

But Wayne Madsen’s sources say “Rice and Fuller may have asked one too many questions that the Ugandan regime found uncomfortable and in an attempt to forestall a further investigation, decided to poison Rice and Fuller. 

From the police report: "Toxicological results of the post-mortem exhibits submitted to Government Analytical Laboratory Wandegeya reveals that major metabolites of cocaine were qualitatively detected. The whitish power in a plastic bag found at the scene contained acetaminophen, caffeine, acetylcodein, diacetylmorphine and papaverine which are opiates classified as drug of abuse."

In Madsen’s article, headlined “CBS producer murdered by Susan Rice’s favorite dictator” (Susan Rice is the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations) featured on Madsen’s popular, subscription-only site, he reminds readers that the FBI, which normally appears on the scene to investigate the deaths of American citizens in foreign countries, “has been strangely silent on the Rice assassination.”

Back to the aforementioned Daily Mail article ... while both tested positive for cocaine, and speculation among Ugandan authorities is that Rice and Fuller were part of a drug-smuggling operation, “friends believe they were forced to ingest it after a failed shakedown … others fear they were targeted because they were working on an investigative documentary.”

We were unable to confirm it at the time of publication (1:20 a.m., Feb. 24, 2012), a "Jeff Rice" graduated in 1990 from Broken Arrow High School in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Considering his age was 39, that would correlate with the 1990 graduation date.

Copyright 2012 West Marie Media

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About the Author

Andrew W. Griffin

Andrew W. Griffin received his Bachelor of Science in Journalism from John Brown University in... read more

About Red Dirt Report

Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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