Monthly Archives: January 2013

Kanzu was already prominent in Buganda by 1925



This must have been around 1925. That kanzu robe had become more prominent, after being introduced by Arab traders, and worn along with the European coat. The lorry here is more modern than others that dominated the scene in 1920.

This must have been around 1925. That kanzu robe had become more prominent, after being introduced by Arab traders, and worn along with the European coat. The lorry here is more modern than others that dominated the scene in 1920.

Initially the kanzu was imported and was made from either cotton or linen, a combination of reasons that kept it out of reach of the majority. But as time passed, it began trickling down to ordinary Baganda. The men began making the kanzu from barkcloth, the traditional clothing material used then.

With time, they began making it from cheaper fabrics like silk and poplin, which was brought in by Indian and Arab traders. Today the kanzu is made from silk, cotton, poplin and linen. Linen kanzus are the most expensive. While adopting the kanzu, the Baganda made some changes to its design, making their version
different from all the other tunics worn around the world, especially those from its parent design from Arabia.This outfit originally was introduced by Arabs. The most significant addition to the kanzu by the Baganda was the embroidery added around the collar, abdomen and the sleeves. This embroidery, called ‘Omulela’, is unique to the Uganda kanzu and it is hand sewn.

In the 1930s and 1940s, the Baganda also added the tradition of wearing a coat atop the kanzu. By picking the blazer from the dress culture of the Europeans, who were the colonial power then the Baganda created a hybrid of Arabian and British dress code. The kanzu in Uganda today is worn in many areas complete with a coat, save for the Muslims who prefer to keep it as plain as the Arabs. However, some Muslims add a tarboosh on the head.

Tarboosh or ‘Entalabusi’ is mainly worn in Turkey and Morocco. However, Tarboosh (head cap) is not an Islamic requirement for men to wear. It is due to specific countries traditions and practice..

As Buganda’s culture spread to other areas of Uganda, the kanzu spread with it and could rightly be the ‘the unofficial national dress of Ugandan men’.Buganda folks have sort of created a hybrid from Colonial dress and Arabic version.The outfit is certainly Arabic in its origin.

So, basically Kanzu is a traditional dress of Buganda people and not Uganda although popular in many districts.




When a gomesi is really a knock-out, the expression these days is that it is “gomesi kiboko!”


Irene Drusilla Namaganda was born in 1896.Irene Drusilla Namaganda became the Nnabagereka (Queen) when she married King Chwa II. After his death she was the Queen Mother (Namasole) of her son King Mutesa II. The title of Nabagereka was new, created by Chwa II. Previously the wife of the King was called the Kaddulubaale. The Kaddulubaale had no official role, the First Lady was the Lubuga, a sister of the King. The Namasole was, however, a powerful person at court from ancient times.

Sanyu is wearing a suuka, the traditional dress of a maiden. It was an ankle length backcloth (later a length of cotton) wrapped around the body and belted at the waist. At the request of the headmistress of Gayaza High sch, a Goan tailor named Gomes modified the suuka to create a school uniform for Gayaza. By adding sleeves to the suuka the elegant robe recently some people(Otto Patrick & Co) dont want to call it a Kiganda dress- was invented. It was thus called the Gomesi, or the ” boarding” (after boarding school) or busuuti (the name of the robe worn by male VIPs over their kanzu).

I am sure Namasole is Queen Mother. The role of Namasole was really given its greatest focus when Mutesa I’s mother died. Alex Mackay was asked to make a coffin for her. The first coffin in Uganda’s history is said to have been that of Mutesa’s mother. Mutesa had asked Mackay what arrangements were made in royal burials the UK. Mackay’s explanation of Westminster Abbey arrangements led to Mutesa to ask Mackay to make a coffin for his mother and the Baganda royal builders to erect Kasubi Tombs to equal Westminster Abbey in stature and grandeur.

The gomesi is composed of about six layers of fabric on top of another two layers of striped undergarments, all of which is quite sweaty when worn in equatorial sunshine. There are folds and flaps, buttons, a giant belt, and tall, pointy shoulders. I’m told that some ladies put extra layers as padding beneath everything to accentuate the size of their posterior.

When a gomesi is really a knock-out, the expression these days is that it is “gomesi kiboko!”The stripped under garment is called “Kikoyi.”The accentuated posterior is necessary for shaking the hips for the traditional dance”NGOMA” or ‘AGALIBA ENJOLE’. Sexy? yes Sir!!!

There are many variations to the origins of the Gomesi. One such is that the Gomesi existed long before the missionaries and Indians came to Uganda, however, the missionaries introduced the use of cotton instead of the bark cloth, from which the Gomesi was originally made. When the Indians came to Uganda, they added the various fabrics from satin/silk blends and the vibrant colors to the traditional attire.Mr Gomes, an Indian tailor had designed the dress for a Royal Buganda member, and it took on his name. The same indian was hired to design uniforms for Gayaza high sch.GOMESI2

According to some scholars, the first Gomesi were made for schoolgirls in Gayaza, Uganda in the 1940s and 1950s. The Christian missionaries who ran the school hired Indian tailors to design the dress. Traditional Ugandan clothing was made from barkcloth. The Gomesi designed by Indian tailors was made from cotton fabric. The Baganda were the first nationality to wear the Gomesi. Today the Gomesi is the Kiganda traditional dress for women and is also worn by other ethnicities in Uganda.gomesi



The adoption started with the Buganda before moving to Busoga, West Nile and Teso and now almost the entire country. The two garments are what could be called Uganda’s signature dress. Gomesi and Kanzu.

Epiphany Homily Speech By Pope Benedict XVI


Dear Brothers and Sisters,

For the Church which believes and prays, the Wise Men from the East who, guided by the star, made their way to the manger of Bethlehem are only the beginning of a great procession which winds throughout history. Thus the liturgy reads the Gospel which relates the journey of the Wise Men, together with the magnificent prophetic visions of the sixtieth chapter of the Book of Isaiah and Psalm 71, which depict in bold imagery the pilgrimage of the peoples to Jerusalem. Like the shepherds, who as the first visitors to the newborn Child in the manger, embodied the poor of Israel and more generally those humble souls who live in deep interior closeness to Jesus, so the men from the East embody the world of the peoples, the Church of the Gentiles – the men and women who in every age set out on the way which leads to the Child of Bethlehem, to offer him homage as the Son of God and to bow down before him. The Church calls this feast “Epiphany” – the appearance of the Godhead. If we consider the fact that from the very beginning men and women of every place, of every continent, of all the different cultures, mentalities and lifestyles, have been on the way to Christ, then we can truly say that this pilgrimage and this encounter with God in the form of a Child is an epiphany of God’s goodness and loving kindness for humanity (cf. Tit 3:4).

Following a tradition begun by Pope John Paul II, we celebrate the feast of the Epiphany of the Lord also as the day when episcopal ordination will be conferred on four priests who will now cooperate in different ways in the ministry of the Pope for the unity of the one Church of Jesus Christ in the multiplicity of the Particular Churches. The connection between this episcopal ordination and the theme of the pilgrimage of the peoples to Jesus Christ is evident. It is the task of the Bishop in this pilgrimage not merely to walk beside the others, but to go before them, showing the way. But in this liturgy I would like to reflect with you on a more concrete question. Based on the account of Matthew, we can gain a certain idea of what sort of men these were, who followed the sign of the star and set off to find that King who would establish not only for Israel but for all mankind a new kind of kingship. What kind of men were they? And we can also ask whether, despite the difference of times and tasks, we can glimpse in them something of what a Bishop is and how he is to carry out his task.

These men who set out towards the unknown were, in any event, men with a restless heart. Men driven by a restless quest for God and the salvation of the world. They were filled with expectation, not satisfied with their secure income and their respectable place in society. They were looking for something greater. They were no doubt learned men, quite knowledgeable about the heavens and probably possessed of a fine philosophical formation. But they desired more than simply knowledge about things. They wanted above all else to know what is essential. They wanted to know how we succeed in being human. And therefore they wanted to know if God exists, and where and how he exists. Whether he is concerned about us and how we can encounter him. Nor did they want just to know. They wanted to understand the truth about ourselves and about God and the world. Their outward pilgrimage was an expression of their inward journey, the inner pilgrimage of their hearts. They were men who sought God and were ultimately on the way towards him. They were seekers after God.

Here we come to the question: What sort of man must he be, upon whom hands are laid in episcopal ordination in the Church of Jesus Christ? We can say that he must above all be a man concerned for God, for only then will he also be truly concerned about men. Inversely, we could also say that a Bishop must be a man concerned for others, one who is concerned about what happens to them. He must be a man for others. But he can only truly be so if he is a man seized by God, if concern for God has also become for him concern for God’s creature who is man. Like the Wise Men from the East, a Bishop must not be someone who merely does his job and is content with that. No, he must be gripped by God’s concern for men and women. He must in some way think and feel with God. Human beings have an innate restlessness for God, but this restlessness is a participation in God’s own restlessness for us. Since God is concerned about us, he follows us even to the crib, even to the Cross. “Thou with weary steps hast sought me, crucified hast dearly bought me, may thy pains not be in vain”, the Church prays in the Dies Irae. The restlessness of men for God and hence the restlessness of God for men must unsettle the Bishop. This is what we mean when we say that, above all else, the Bishop must be a man of faith. For faith is nothing less than being interiorly seized by God, something which guides us along the pathways of life. Faith draws us into a state of being seized by the restlessness of God and it makes us pilgrims who are on an inner journey towards the true King of the world and his promise of justice, truth and love. On this pilgrimage the Bishop must go ahead, he must be the guide pointing out to men and women the way to faith, hope and love.

Faith’s inner pilgrimage towards God occurs above all in prayer. Saint Augustine once said that prayer is ultimately nothing more than the realization and radicalization of our yearning for God. Instead of “yearning”, we could also translate the word as “restlessness” and say that prayer would detach us from our false security, from our being enclosed within material and visible realities, and would give us a restlessness for God and thus an openness to and concern for one another. The Bishop, as a pilgrim of God, must be above all a man of prayer. He must live be in constant inner contact with God; his soul must be open wide to God. He must bring before God his own needs and the needs of others, as well as his joys and the joys of others, and thus in his own way establish contact between God and the world in communion with Christ, so that Christ’s light can shine in the world.

Let us return to the Wise Men from the East. These were also, and above all, men of courage, the courage and humility born of faith. Courage was needed to grasp the meaning of the star as a sign to set out, to go forth – towards the unknown, the uncertain, on paths filled with hidden dangers. We can imagine that their decision was met with derision: the scorn of those realists who could only mock the reveries of such men. Anyone who took off on the basis of such uncertain promises, risking everything, could only appear ridiculous. But for these men, inwardly seized by God, the way which he pointed out was more important than what other people thought. For them, seeking the truth meant more than the taunts of the world, so apparently clever.

How can we not think, in this context, of the task of a Bishop in our own time? The humility of faith, of sharing the faith of the Church of every age, will constantly be in conflict with the prevailing wisdom of those who cling to what seems certain. Anyone who lives and proclaims the faith of the Church is on many points out of step with the prevalent way of thinking, even in our own day. Today’s regnant agnosticism has its own dogmas and is extremely intolerant regarding anything that would question it and the criteria it employs. Therefore the courage to contradict the prevailing mindset is particularly urgent for a Bishop today. He must be courageous. And this courage or forcefulness does not consist in striking out or in acting aggressively, but rather in allowing oneself to be struck and to be steadfast before the principles of the prevalent way of thinking. The courage to stand firm in the truth is unavoidably demanded of those whom the Lord sends like sheep among wolves. “Those who fear the Lord will not be timid”, says the Book of Sirach (34:16). The fear of God frees us from the fear of men. It liberates.

Here I am reminded of an episode at the very beginning of Christianity which Saint Luke recounts in the Acts of the Apostles. After the speech of Gamaliel, who advised against violence in dealing with the earliest community of believers in Jesus, the Sanhedrin summoned the Apostles and had them flogged. It then forbade them from preaching in the name of Jesus and set them free. SaintLuke continues: “As they left the council, they rejoiced that they were considered worthy to suffer dishonour for the name of Jesus. And every day… they did not cease to teach and proclaim Jesus as the Messiah” (Acts 5:40ff.). The successors of the Apostles must also expect to be repeatedly beaten, by contemporary methods, if they continue to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ in a way that can be heard and understood. Then they can rejoice that they have been considered worthy of suffering for him. Like the Apostles, we naturally want to convince people and in this sense to obtain their approval. Naturally, we are not provocative; on the contrary we invite all to enter into the joy of that truth which shows us the way. The approval of the prevailing wisdom, however, is not the criterion to which we submit. Our criterion is the Lord himself. If we defend his cause, we will constantly gain others to the way of the Gospel. But, inevitably, we will also be beaten by those who live lives opposed to the Gospel, and then we can be grateful for having been judged worthy to share in the passion of Christ.

The Wise Men followed the star, and thus came to Jesus, to the great Light which enlightens everyone coming into this world (cf. Jn 1:9). As pilgrims of faith, the Wise Men themselves became stars shining in the firmament of history and they show us the way. The saints are God’s true constellations, which light up the nights of this world, serving as our guides. Saint Paul, in his Letter to the Philippians, told his faithful that they must shine like stars in the world (cf. 2:15).

Dear friends, this holds true for us too. It holds true above all for you who are now to be ordained Bishops of the Church of Jesus Christ. If you live with Christ, bound to him anew in this sacrament, then you too will become wise men. Then you will become stars which go before men and women, pointing out to them the right path in life. All of us here are now praying for you, that the Lord may fill you with the light of faith and love. That that restlessness of God for man may seize you, so that all may experience his closeness and receive the gift of his joy. We are praying for you, that the Lord may always grant you the courage and humility of faith. We ask Mary, who showed to the Wise Men the new King of the world (cf. Mt 2:11), as a loving mother, to show Jesus Christ also to you and to help you to be guides along the way which leads to him.


During the 1966 attack on the palace, Mutesa 2 sought refuge at the Rubaga Cathedral


CATThis is the Rubaga Cathedral-The seat of the Roman catholic church in uganda.During the 1966 attack on the palace,the late King Mutesa sought refuge at the Cathedral and the priests hid him there for a while before his exile to the UK.At One Time Archbishop Cabana(A Canadian) was the Archbishop of Rubaga. Sister Rachel, One of the Canadian Nuns Now Living in Montreal-Canada, was also a Nun there.Rachel later run a school in northern Uganda.She is such a great personality. She dared the Kony rebels when she pleaded for the release of the girls that had been abducted from that school and asked them to kill her in exchange for the release of the girls.

2.In our first instalment of the series on the last days of the Kabaka in England, Apollo Makubuya, Baganda’s current Attorney General, writes about the struggles the king went through during his exile in England.

Beyond the controversy surrounding his death, little is known or written about Sir Edward Muteesa’s struggle to survive in the UK from 1966 to 1969. This piece is written in memory of one of Uganda’s most unsung heroes – born on November 19, 1924 and died on November 24, 1969. It uncovers the treachery, intrigue and the diplomatic scandals surrounding what the British bureaucrats called the “Muteesa problem”. It ponders the lessons from Obote’s attack on the Lubiri and Muteesa’s defiance of political blackmail and oppression.

When Sir Edward Muteesa (Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) and Uganda’s first Commander-in-Chief and President), jumped over the wall of the Lubiri and walked hundreds of miles to escape Obote’s killers, he did not know what lay in store for him. A new insight, based on historical documents and accounts from family and friends, portrays another dimension on his life in exile in the UK – a life that was as wretched as it was inspirational.

The struggle to settle in England
Far from the grandeur of his palaces and the splendour of the State House, Muteesa, together with his guards Maj. Katende and George Malo, had to settle for a very small one-bedroom flat in Bermondsey in a neighborhood called Rotherhithe. This was kindly offered by a friend – as they had no money at all to rent a better shelter. Other friends, like Major Richard Carr-Gomm, Lord Boyd of Merton, Captain Ronnie Owen and his Solicitor Martin Flegg, set up a small trust of about £789 for his upkeep. Once this fund run out, he had to apply to Her Majesty’s Government (HMG) for unemployment benefits (the dole). He got £ 8.1s a week while his guard, Mr. Katende, got £7. 6s a week. On this, they survived from hand to mouth and sometimes on a diet of tea and biscuits. Some Baganda individuals like one Mr. Iga occasionally supported. Many were scared to be associated with Muteesa for fear of what Obote would do.

To maintain the benefits from HMG, Muteesa and his guards were required to declare any gifts donated by friends including birthday presents. Muteesa relied on the kindness of his friends to pay school fees for his children. Employment in the army, where he was a Lt. Colonel with the Grenadier Guards, was declined or frustrated by the British Government. His pension from the civil contingency fund was not paid. According to the UK Ministry of Social Security no “suitable” employment was available.

Living in exile takes its toll
The British bureaucrats felt that the only possibility for employment was “if he undertook agricultural or forestry training”.

In the early days of exile, his movements were mostly restricted to his flat – for fear of being abducted by Obote’s men. So bleak was his condition that, at a meeting with the Secretary of State on May 10, 1968, Lord Boyd said that Sir Edward had had a mental break down and was suffering from delusions. Lord Boyd described his plight as “pathetic”. Of course, his mental state was not always like that. On many occasions he was jolly, notwithstanding his new circumstances.

Almost overnight, Muteesa had become a diplomatic nightmare and a thorn in HMG’s side. On top of their troubles with Ian D. smith in Rhodesia, Julius K. Nyerere in Tanzania, and Kenneth Kaunda in Zambia, the British Government was keen not to annoy Obote and his new Government. Yet at the same time, it was also under considerable pressure from Muteesa’s influential British friends to take good care of him. In the event, HMG chose to abandon Muteesa and support Obote.

It thus accepted Muteesa as a private citizen and not a political refugee. It refused to have any official dealing with him. This was regardless of the fact that Obote had violently abrogated Uganda’s independence Constitution and had the blood of many Ugandans on his hands following the attack on Muteesa’s palace on the cold night of May 24, 1966.

A memo from 10 Downing Street dated February 6, 1967 shows that the British Prime Minister, Harold Wilson, agreed with the Commonwealth Secretary that “any overt grant to the Kabaka could be politically embarrassing”. And, while the Prime Minister pondered discreet support from “secret funds”, this was rejected because his bureaucrats felt that “HMG had no moral or legal obligation to assist Muteesa”. Also, because they felt that “while the risks of detection would be slight, there was just a possibility that the Ugandans might guess the truth and this would seriously damage our relations with them”.

Thus HMG gave Muteesa no more financial assistance than it would to any other “destitute resident”.

How HMG felt about the king
HMG’s position on Muteesa is best captured in a memo of June 24, 1968, authored by R. G. Tallboys of the Commonwealth Office (East Africa Department) to Mr Scott. It stated that –
“If we are ever going to be rid of the Muteesa problem, other than simply waiting for him to go away, there are two lines of approach we should adopt. One is to use his friends and sympathisers in this country as a channel for putting heavier pressure on Muteesa to accept the Uganda conditions, rather than having these friends serve as their main purpose to channel to us tales of woe about Muteesa’s circumstances. The situation is :- (a) His family have been generously treated by the Uganda Government. (b) He has been given assistance by HMG in the form of social benefits. (c) he has assets in Uganda that can be sold. (d) He can almost certainly obtain access to the proceeds, or some of the proceeds, of these assets if he accepts the reality of political conditions in Uganda. (e) There is no case whatever for HMG to do more for him than has and is being done. The second thing is, without waiting for Mutesa to agree to the Uganda conditions, to encourage the realisation of his land in Uganda…I am writing to Peter Foster suggesting that Muteesa’s land should be sold without waiting for prior approval to the effect that the proceeds can be transferred…Once there is cash in the bank it may be easier to get both Muteesa’s agreement to Obote’s conditions and/or to get Obote to agree to remission of some of the money – even if only interest earned. Muteesa is not a destitute in the sense that he has no assets – his financial difficulties here are no more than the cost of his personal vanity and pride.”

The position of Uganda’s government on Muteesa – and that of Obote, in particular, was always clear. In his autobiography entitled The Desecration of My Kingdom, Muteesa wrote that by 1966 “Obote has already put me as President squarely in his sights and having obtained the range by mere pointing out at me publicly, he is now pressing firmly at the trigger”.

The hate and venom poured on Buganda and Muteesa by Obote and his UPC colleagues in the post-1966 period is available for all to see in the Hansards of the National Assembly.

In short, for Obote and his friends, Muteesa needed to be cut down to size. Now that he had escaped with his life, Muteesa needed to be starved of funds so that he could succumb – either privately or publically – to acknowledge the established state of affairs in Uganda.

Somehow, the British played along and pressured Muteesa to accept these conditions in total disregard of their (il)legality, morality or even implications on the long standing relationship they had with the kingdom and people of Buganda since 1894.

The Baganda were able to see through this although they could do little because of the fear instilled in them by the emergency laws and Obote’s brutal terror machine in Buganda. But in a brave open-letter to the British Prime Minister dated May 21, 1968, some six Baganda students, including Y. Nsambu, Joseph Male, M. Nansamba, and S. Nansamba, protested the actions of Obote and HMG government.

They stated that “the British Government has now joined hands with the Uganda authorities in holding the Kabaka as a hostage until His Highness surrenders”.

How the kingdom came to be abolished
Sam Odaka, Uganda’s Minister for foreign Affairs at the time, set the conditions for the amelioration of Muteesa’s plight.

He declared that the Government of Uganda was prepared to consider any proposal to remit funds from Muteesa’s assets in Uganda to England, but that such consideration was dependant on Muteesa giving “definite and unequivocal proof that he accepts the changes that have taken place in Uganda, the 1967 Constitution and the authority of the present government”.

Obote was not content with Muteesa’s dreadful life in exile. So, to complete his subjugation and the humiliation of the Baganda, he, by a stroke of a pen, “abolished” the 600-year old Kingdom of Buganda.

He then confiscated all the Kingdom’s land and assets and handed them to the State. As if that weren’t enough, he converted the Kabaka’s palace at Mengo into an army barracks. He took over the former Lukiiko (Buganda’s Parliament) and made it his new army headquarters.

The palace grounds were later to become one of Uganda’s most notorious torture chambers and killing fields.

Many people including Abu Mayanja, Mayanja Nkangi, David Ssimbwa and others were detained without trial. Many others were killed. Little surprise that, during those difficult days, the saying that “a good Muganda is a dead one” gained popularity in the corridors of power. source: DAILY MONITOR

Uganda’s newest controversial religion: ” Happy Science Religion”. WATCH OUT,GUYS


Uganda’s newest controversial religion: ” Happy Science Religion”-inscribed on the building as well.Imported from Japan, Happy Science advertises itself as a global religion with a goal of teaching “the truth about life, the world and ourselves.” The religion says it’s grand mission is to create a world filled with love, peace, harmony and prosperity. Christians are offended by its beliefs.they were mainly opposed by the new churches in Uganda which are mainly breakaway churches from the traditional churches!quite ironical. Its another nutcase. I feel sorry for the gullible people who may fall victims.

2.In this photo, Ugandan Happy Science believers walk out after prayers at their church in the capital Kampala, Uganda. The Happy Science religion with origins in Japan is quickly amassing a following in Uganda, where it is winning converts in a sleek campaign that has attracted the attention of Christian clerics offended by its beliefs.

3.In this photo taken Sunday, July 1, 2012, “Happy Science” Reverend Tomohiko Nakagawa, left, leads prayers at their church in the capital Kampala, Uganda. The “Happy Science” religion with origins in Japan is quickly amassing a following in Uganda, where it is winning converts in a sleek campaign that has attracted the attention of Christian clerics offended by its beliefs.

‘Welcoming a tractor at the 1955 / 50yr celebrations’



Fifty-five years later, there are only three (3) tractors (the type of Massey Ferguson that can plough) in Masaka, Bukomansimbi, Lwengo and Kalungu districts, perhaps because the land has also been too much fragmented.

One of the three tractors (my father and I call them karakita) is stationed at Kamenyamiggo Agricultural Centre.

At least let us be aware of such ugly facts to know the descending highway our country has been fast sliding especially from mid-80s. Sadly, it continues to dive into the abyss.

The Lord Bless You.
Matovu Abdallah Twaha
I thought your mind would go to the bare feeted girls and how their were being exploited. we are still in this kind of exploitation except that we now invite it and accept it officially unfortunately we dont know it. This photograph makes me feel disgraced

Prof Waswa Balunywa, PhD
Makerere University Business School
P.O Box 1337,

Cotton was first introduced into Uganda by K. Borup, an industrial missionary


History on the cotton in Uganda …. A view looking along a cotton ginning plant with Ugandans at work at the machines which separate the cotton from the seeds. Cotton was first introduced into Uganda by K. Borup, an industrial missionary, who in 1903 distributed 62 bags of cotton seeds for planting. The Uganda Cotton Company, with Borup as manager, was founded in 1904. By the time of the Uganda Agricultural Exhibition in 1908 cotton output was estimated by the Governor to be worth UKP50,000 and was the major exhibit. By the time Sir Albert Cook wrote ‘Uganda Memories’ cotton output was second only to India in the Empire and it maintained this position until recent years.

Here are the trends for the cotton industry in Uganda from 1924 to 2004. Look at details here: Below are the trends in the cotton industry in Uganda








Ben was dreaming of Uganda’s independence when all other politician including the regime iniBuganda were fast a sleep.A brilliant Lawyer as well!
One of the reasons why he formed the democratic party(D.P) was in response to the marginalisation of people of the catholic faith in Buganda by then.

Remember Uganda was a British protectorate and most Britons were Protestants,furthermore the King embrased the Anglican(Protestant) ,thus ensuring the Anglican hegemony which was also the basis of the coalition between UPC and KY.

Professor Mazrui a reknown African scholar who was lectured at Makerere University but hails from Kenya,described Uganda as the Northern Ireland of Africa.Just like Northern Ireland,ugandan politics has been largely influenced by religion,which is sad!I think all ugandans lost out from this “madness” because it eventually gave rise to Amin!!!

In the late 1960s Uganda was in a state of instability. After strengthening his military base, Idi Amin overthrew Obote’s government and forcibly took control in 1971. Amin plunged Uganda into a deep crisis and an era of ruthless persecution.

Confusion surrounded Kiwanuka’s arrest in September of 1972. Witnesses reported that armed men seized him, although a military spokesman denied the arrest and suggested that government impostors may have been responsible for the capture of several important officials. Shortly after, Amin’s forces murdered him. Kiwanuka was one of many people slaughtered during Amin’s reigning years of chaos and terror. In his book Uganda Since Independence: A Story of Unfulfilled Hopes, Phares Mutibwa asserted that Amin murdered Kiwanuka because he perceived him to be a potential rival leader.

History has it that the Late Benedicto Kiwanuka was a disciplinarian.On one occasion,he dismissed a magistrate from duty for late comming and drunkeness.This magistrate was a close friend of the late Dr Sembeguya who was the first Ugandan doctor to venture into private medical practice.It was said that when Mr Kiwanuka was murdered the Doctor organised a “party” for his demise,as a sign of pay back for having fired his magistrate friend.Late after afew months,Amins men came for the doctor’s life!Any lesson to learn???????????



Abu Mayanja was the first Secretary General of UNC ( Uganda National Congress ) in 1950’s. Abu Mayanja was the minister of Health in Idi Amins Government.He is now late!died some years ago.

DP was founded mainly as a party to challenge the Royal ruling class which was mainly Anglican.Thus you find that most DP suppoters up to today are Roman Catholics.Uganda having been a British protectorate and most British were Anglicans,made sure that power does not go to the catholics.Thus Bishop Brown the Archbishop then in uganda had to advise them on a coalition.Obote was anglican and so was the Monarchy thus a marriage of convinience was consumated between UPC and KY.

Each party thought after doing away with the common enemy(DP),one would out manoever the other.Obote was more cunning and the rest is history.It was this greed,sectarianism,egos which has led to the bleeding of uganda up to today.I think if DP had won i doubt if Amin would have surfaced on the scene!remember Obote appointed Amin whom he felt could use to intimidate his opponents.A very sad piece of history filled with “what if’s”.

Politics is such a funny BUT deadly venture at the same time.  on second thoughts I should say weird thing that in the process of putting power in hands of certain group leads to such chaos and brutality that couple of generations of the innocent people pay a heavy price and many others perished for ever….very sad indeed.

Religious descrimination was rife in Buganda in terms of job opportunities and caused a lot of tension.Late Ben Kiwanuka saw Uganda as a nationalist while the traditionalist had a narrow view.At the end of the day the traditionalists were the biggest losers in terms of property and lives!!!

A quiz question most people failed during our time, and may still fail today: Who was the first Prime Minister of Uganda?Answer is NOT Apollo Milton Obote.Benedicto Kiwanuka was the Chief Minister from July 1961 to February 1962. On 1st March 1962 he was appointed the first Prime Minister[P.S. I know even Wikipedia has it wrong just like most historians in Uganda].


1500 – Bito dynasties of Buganda, Bunyoro and Ankole founded by Nilotic-speaking immigrants from present-day southeastern Sudan.

1700 – Buganda begins to expand at the expense of Bunyoro.

1800 – Buganda controls territory bordering Lake Victoria from the Victoria Nile to the Kagera river.

1840s – Muslim traders from the Indian Ocean coast exchange firearms, cloth and beads for the ivory and slaves of Buganda.

1862 – British explorer John Hanning Speke becomes the first European to visit Buganda.

1875 – Bugandan King Mutesa I allows Christian missionaries to enter his realm.

1877 – Members of the British Missionary Society arrive in Buganda.

1879 – Members of the French Roman Catholic White Fathers arrive.

1890 – Britain and Germany sign treaty giving Britain rights to what was to become Uganda.

1892 – Imperial British East Africa Company agent Frederick Lugard extends the company’s control to southern Uganda and helps the Protestant missionaries to prevail over their Catholic counterparts in Buganda.

1894 – Uganda becomes a British protectorate.

1900 – Britain signs agreement with Buganda giving it autonomy and turning it into a constitutional monarchy controlled mainly by Protestant chiefs.

1902 – The Eastern province of Uganda transferred to the Kenya.

1904 – Commercial cultivation of cotton begins.

1921 – Uganda given a legislative council, but its first African member not admitted till 1945.

1958 – Uganda given internal self-government. Elections held in 1961 – Benedicto Kiwanuka elected Chief Minister.

1962 – Uganda becomes independent with Milton Obote as prime minister and with Buganda enjoying considerable autonomy.

1963 – Uganda becomes a republic with Buganda’s King Mutesa II as president.

1966 – Milton Obote ends Buganda’s autonomy and promotes himself to the presidency.

1967 – New constitution vests considerable power in the president.

1971 – Milton Obote toppled in coup led by Army chief Idi Amin.

1972 – Amin expels Israelis giving them 2 weeks to leave.

1972 – Amin orders Asians who were not Ugandan citizens – around 60,000 people – to leave the country in 3 months.

1972-73 – Uganda engages in border clashes with Tanzania.

1976 – Idi Amin declares himself president for life and claims parts of Kenya.

1978 – Uganda invades Tanzania with a view to annexing Kagera region.

1979 – Tanzania invades Uganda, unifying the various anti-Amin forces under the Uganda National Liberation Front and forcing Amin to flee the country; Yusufu Lule installed as president, but is quickly replaced by Godfrey Binaisa.

1980 – Binaisa overthrown by the army.

1980 – Milton Obote becomes president after elections.

1981-86 Following the bitterly disputed elections, Ugandan bush war fought by National Resistance Army

1985 – Obote deposed in military coup and is replaced by Tito Okello.

1986 – National Resistance Army rebels take Kampala and install Yoweri Museveni as president.

1993 – Museveni restores the traditional kings, including the king of Buganda, but without political power.

1995 – New constitution legalizes political parties but maintains the ban on political activity.

1996 – Museveni returned to office in Uganda’s first direct presidential election.

2000 – Ugandans vote to reject multi-party politics in favour of continuing Museveni’s “no-party” system.

2001 January – East African Community (EAC) re-inaugurated in Arusha, Tanzania, laying groundwork for common East African passport, flag, economic and monetary integration. Members are Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya.

2001 March – Museveni wins another term in office, beating his rival Kizza Besigye by 69% to 28%. Campaign against rebels

2002 October – Army evacuates more than 400,000 civilians caught up in fight against cult-like LRA which continues its brutal attacks on villages.

2003 May – Uganda pulls out last of its troops from eastern DR Congo. Tens of thousands of DR Congo civilians seek asylum in Uganda.

2004 December – Government and LRA rebels hold their first face-to-face talks, but there is no breakthrough in ending the insurgency.

2005 July – Parliament approves a constitutional amendment which scraps presidential term limits. Voters in a referendum overwhelmingly back a return to multi-party politics.

2005 October – International Criminal Court issues arrest warrants for five LRA commanders, including leader Joseph Kony.

2006 February – President Museveni wins multi-party elections, taking 59% of the vote against the 37% share of his rival, Kizza Besigye.

2006 August – The government and the LRA sign a truce aimed at ending their long-running conflict. Subsequent peace talks are marred by regular walk-outs.

2007 March – Ugandan peacekeepers deploy in Somalia as part of an African Union mission to help stabilise the country.

2008 February – Government and the Lord’s Resistance Army sign what is meant to be a permanent ceasefire at talks in Juba, Sudan.

2008 November – The leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army, Joseph Kony, again fails to turn up for the signing of a peace agreement. Ugandan, South Sudanese and DR Congo armies launch offensive against LRA bases.

2009 The UK oil explorer Heritage Oil says it has made a major oil find in Uganda.

2009 March – Ugandan army begins to withdraw from DR Congo, where it had pursued Lord’s Resistance Army rebels.

2009 December – Parliament votes to ban female circumcision. Anyone convicted of the practice will face 10 years in jail or a life sentence if a victim dies.

2010 January – President Museveni distances himself from the anti-homosexuality Bill, saying the ruling party MP who proposed the bill did so as an individual. The European Union and United States had condemned the bill.

2010 July – Two bomb attacks on people watching World Cup final at a restaurant and a rugby club in Kampala kill at least 74 people. The Somali Islamist group Al-Shabab says it was behind the blasts.

2011 February – Museveni wins his fourth presidential election.

2011 July – US deploys special forces personnel to help Uganda combat LRA rebels.

2012 Aug- Uganda’s Stephen Kiprotich winS the Gold Medal in Marathon at the Olympics ,Uganda,s second Gold medal ever, and third Olympic medal since joining the Olympics.


Kabaka Mutesa 2, Prince Badru Kakungulu, Captain Ronnie Owen and Lady Damali Kisosonkole


Kabaka Edward Muteesa II (C) upon his return from two years of exile in Britain on October 18,1955.

The lady behind Ssekabaka Mutesa is actually the late Princess Irene Ndagire (Mutesa’s sister);
The elderly lady to the extreme left of the photo is the Namasole Irene Druscilla Namaganda (Mutesa’s mother);
The elderly gentleman (next to the right shoulder of Badru Kakungulu) is the late Mzee Manyang’enda (the grandfather of John Nagenda, among others);
The white gentleman (by the Namasole) is Captain Ronnie Owen – he was a close friend of Ssekabaka Mutesa).