• By Francis Ndugwa
  • 31 July, 2021
  • Nkoni Palace, Masaka

Kabaka Mutebi Celebrates 28th Coronation Anniversary

Authentic Kiganda culture, glamour, royalty, pomp and pageantry were on full display on July 30th 2021 at Nkoni Palace in Masaka  as Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi  marked his 28th Coronation anniversary.
During the celebrationsthe Kabaka said that Buganda Kingdom will not stop pushing for the return of its properties that are still in the hands of the Central government.

The Kabaka said both his cabinet and Lukiiko (Parliament) have been consistent in demanding for what belongs to the kingdom through negotiations and will continue to use the same means to achieve their goal.
“For the last 28 years, we have been at the forefront of demanding for justice, federal, land and our buildings. These and other things, we call them Ebyaffe. I want to emphasize this, we shall not relent in our quest for Ebyaffe through negotiations as we have done in the past,” Kabaka Mutebi said.

In 2013, government and Buganda Kingdom signed a Memorandum of Understanding which the former agreed to return all kingdom property which were confiscated after 1966 during the Buganda crisis.
Some of the properties have been returned but other properties such as land occupied by Makindye Military Barracks, Kigo Prison, Mengo Court are yet to be handed over by government whose rent arrears has accumulated to Shs215.8 billion by April.

The kingdom had threatened to sue government on grounds that it had failed to meet its obligation as stated in the law that reinstated cultural institutions in 1993.

The Kabaka also castigated people who are pushing for the abolition of Mailo land tenure system, which is mainly in Buganda, saying they are bent on weakening the kingdom.

He said some kingdom critics were portraying Buganda as an institution that is not accommodative yet all people regardless of their cultural backgrounds, have peacefully settled in Buganda over the years.
“For those who want to scrap Mailo land their goal is to weaken Buganda. This prompts us to ask, why land in other parts of Uganda is not talked about. Why Buganda land?” he said
Mr Charles Peter Mayiga, the kingdom Katikkiro (prime minister), said prior to the enactment of the Land Act 1998, Buganda had advised that government implements the Busuulu and Envujjo law of 1928 which protected rights of both landlords and tenants but their proposal was never considered.

“When Mailo land is abolished as being suggested in some quarters, one of the key pillars on which this kingdom was built will be destroyed. You parliamentarians who are here should know this; Buganda has never failed to discuss this (land) issue. We are ready to sit and show you how best land wrangles can better be resolved,” he said

The head of clan leaders (Bataka), Mr Augustine Kizito Mutumba had earlier reported to the Kabaka that there was rampant duplication of land titles which he said has deprived many people in Buganda of their land rights.

Like it was last year, some cultural activities like carrying the Kabaka shoulder high [Okukonjojja] were not conducted to avoid contravening the social distancing guidelines meant to contain the spread of coronavirus.

The Kabaka was instead driven in his car to fulfil this ritual. To access the venue, all invited guests had to observe Covid-19 guidelines issued by the Health Ministry such as social distancing, washing hands with soap and using sanitizers, wearing masks and measuring the body temperature.

 Last year, the anniversary was supposed to take place in Ssingo County but due to Covid pandemic, it was shifted to Mengo Palace, commonly known as Lubiri and a handful of guests attended.
 Kabaka Mutebi , who is the 36th King of Buganda ascended to the throne on July 31, 1993 after a string of talks between the Central government and Mengo.

SsaabajjaKabaka Speech during the 28th Coronation Anniversary at Nkoni Palace in Buddu on July 31, 2021.
Let me start by congratulating you upon this milestone in our beloved Kingdom. We thank God who has enabled us to carry out the responsibilities entrusted in us.
We thank all those volunteers who have enabled the Kingdom to deliver its responsibilities especially in this period when we don’t administer any taxes and yet we haven’t fully received our assets that would enable us deliver services to the people.
We thank Ugandans in the diaspora for their continued support. Thank you very much.
We continue to thank all the individuals, companies and organizations that supported us to fight poverty and diseases especially HIV/AIDS and fistula.
We thank all those people who have joined us to condemn the leadership that doesn’t respect the rule of law.
We urge all parents to properly raise their children, so that they can fully compete in this beautiful country; we strongly discourage domestic violence and discrimination of the girl child.
However, we are grateful for the work done by the youth in supporting the Kingdom.
We should continue teaching our children Luganda as well as imparting them with our culture and norms.
At the same time, we are grateful for the members of the royal family for the work they have done since the coronation such as renovating the palaces in the different parts of the Kingdom.
We condole with those who have lost their loved ones due to COVID-19. We thank all Ugandans for putting into practice the different standard operating procedures as issued by the experts. We urge you not to give up.
We are grateful to Makerere University, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, and Gulu University for the research towards finding a cure for COVID-19. We urge the government to continue funding researchers and scientists so that they can find a cure of this disease.
We all remember that to restore the Kingdom in 1993, they are certain things that had to be done which include: Directly being involved in ending the dictatorship and agreeing on the role of cultural institutions in fostering development. We lost a lot of things including: a federal system of governance, land, buildings including Bulange and palaces. These and what we call Ebyaffe, which is true that they belong to us. We have not done anything else apart from negotiating and reminding the leaders of what we agreed upon including respecting human rights, the rule of law and the development of the Kingdom of Buganda. It is now 28 years but we know that we will solve these issues through peaceful means.
We sincerely thank those who have supported the settlement of the Buganda question through fairness and truthfulness. We urge them not to give up until we have solved these issues through peace and justice.
We condemn those who deliberately create processes to derail us when we remind our country leaders on issues of settling the Buganda question. Buganda has never clamored for secession or chasing other Ugandans.
We have heard a lot of talk about land in Buganda with some arguing that it is the reason for poor development of Uganda. This is not true at all. Those who push this argument simply want to weaken the Kingdom. Such arguments sadden our hearts leading us to ask: Why isn’t there any discussion on land outside Buganda? Why is our hospitality being misinterpreted for weakness?
Let me remind everyone: We shall never give up to remind the government of Uganda that like all other parts of the country, the Kingdom of Buganda has tenets peculiar to it. These tenets can’t be compromised.
We want to once again thank Pookino and all Kingdom leaders in Buddu County for the wonderful coronation gifts.
We thank Members of Parliament from Buganda for their pledge to fight for our tenets.
I want to thank the employees of Nkuluze (Royal Treasury) for the wonderful job of renovating this palace (Nkoni).
Lastly, I want to thank all Clan Heads especially those who are still youthful and have just been installed for the wonderful work they are doing. Most of these Clan Heads are still young but also well educated. We urge them to use their education and experience to mobilise the youth to work hard and continue valuing our culture and norms.
We pray for your good health.
May God bless you.
Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II
Posted by Buganda Kingdom