One of nine Hands of the Cause of God appointed by Shoghi Effendi (Baha'i Faith).
Funeral in Uganda for Hand of Cause Enoch Olinga The funeral for the Hand of the Cause of God Enoch Olinga was planned, in collaboration with the Continental Board of Counsellors in Central and East Africa, by the month-old Baha'i Administrative Committee for Uganda. This committee was appointed by the Universal House of Justice to oversee the affairs of the Faith in Uganda until the formerly-banned National Spiritual Assembly could be reestablished. George Olinga, the eldest surviving member of the family, joined the Committee in much of these deliberations. Shortly after noon on September 24, 1979, the bodies of the five Olingas were taken from Mulago Hospital mortuary to the Olinga home on Kintante Road in Kampala. The five draped caskets were placed in the sitting room along with the many flowers. Those present recited prayers and sang Baha'i songs. It was a sad and tragic homecoming for the man who had become a Baha'i in that same house in 1952, when it was the residence of the Hand of the Cause of God Musa Banani. Mr. Olinga had purchased the home after Mr. Bananfs passing. The funeral procession assembled at the Olinga home. The five caskets were loaded into pickup trucks, the only vehicles available, for the procession out of the city and up the winding road to Kikaaya Hill. A police escort, required for protection, preceded the automobiles carrying the members of the Board of Counsellors and members of the Olinga family. Other mourners followed in an assortment of vehicles. The funeral began at 2 p.m. in the Conference Hall of the National Hazratu'l-Quds, adjacent to the House of Worship and the Baha'i cemetery. Those present sang "Allah'u'Abha" as the caskets were carried into the hall and placed at the head of the room. The casket of the Hand of the Cause was in the special care of the members of the Board of Counsellors; the other pallbearers were members of the Olinga family and the large Baha'i "family" in East Africa. More than 300 people were present, overflowing the capacity of the building and leaving some standing outside during the service. Some of those at the funeral had walked great distances after being informed of the tragedy by special broadcasts on the state radio system. Officials present included the Minister of Justice as special representative of the President of Uganda; the former Ugandan Ambassador to Lesotho; the Bishop of Namirembe; the Canon of Makerere Church in Kampala; the principal Immigration Officer, and other distinguished guests and representatives of the press. The message from the Universal House of Justice was read during the service as well as other messages of condolence and a brief summary of the life of the Hand of the Cause. Prayers and passages from the Baha'i Writings were read in English, Persian, Swahili, Ateso, and Luganda. The funeral party then proceeded to the cemetery. The Prayer for the Dead was recited, then the casket carrying the earthly remains of the Hand of the Cause of God Enoch Olinga was lowered into the earth of his native land. Mr. Olinga's grave adjoins that of the Hand of the Cause of God Musa Banani. The grave sites of his wife Elizabeth and daughter Tahirih, and those of his two sons, Badi' and Lennie are nearby. Mr. Olinga, a native of Kampala, embraced the Faith of Baha'u'llah in 1952 and spent the next 11 years as a pioneer in West Africa, principally in the Cameroons, Nigeria and Ghana. His heroic efforts in opening the British Cameroons to the Faith led to his being named a Knight of Baha'u'llah. He was appointed a Hand of the Cause of God by the Guardian in October, 1957, the only native African ever to achieve that distinction. The Hand o the Cause traveled extensively in Europe, South East Asia, Australia and New Zealand. He traveled to the United States on at least two occasions, and visited many towns and cities in the Deep South during a period of large-scale enrollment there in 1970. Mr. Olinga represented the Universal House of Justice on a number of occasions, such as the Baha'i National Conventions in the Dominican Republic and Cuba in 1961, and in later years in Burundi / Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Liberia, The Gambia, and at the first Baha'i Oceanic Conference in Palermo, Sicily, in 1968. An economist who was fluent in six languages, Mr. Olinga authored several books, the most important of which is Social and Economic Problems—Their Solution. The cable from the Universal House of Justice pays proper tribute to this beloved Hand of the Cause: "HIS RADIANT SPIRIT, HIS UNWAVERING FAITH, HIS ALL-EMBRACING LOVE, HIS LEONINE AUDACITY IN THE TEACHING FIELD, HIS TITLES KNIGHT BAHA'U'LLAH FATHER VICTORIES CONFERRED BELOVED GUARDIAN, ALL COMBINE DISTINGUISH HIM AS PRE-EMINENT MEMBER HIS RACE IN ANNALS FAITH AFRICAN CONTINENT." Baha'i News/May 1980 page 7