The Mengo Administration has the challenge to come up with worthy work/value for money on the re-construction work of Kasubi tombs given the shs 4bn or so officially received for the work. Many thanks to the Central Government for honouring the shs 2bn pledge. It is however very important that Naggalabi is brought into the picture. the crumbs from the re-construction of Kasubi tombs can surely help in putting a face lift on Naggalabi infrastructures which are in a sorry state.
William Kituuka Kiwanuka
MUSEVENI HONOURS THE SHS 2BN KASUBI TOMBS PLEDGE
President Yoweri Museveni hands over a cheque of shs 2 billion to the Katikiro of Buganda Eng. John Baptist Walusimbi (Jr)
By Vision reporter
President Yoweri Museveni on Wednesday made good on a government pledge of two billion shillings towards the reconstruction of the Kasubi Tombs culturally known as the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga.
The tombs caught fire on March 16, 2010. Later government constituted a Cabinet Committee on Kasubi Tombs that had two Technical committees; The National Technical Committee to oversee the reconstruction of Kasubi Tombs, and a Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the fire that gutted the Tombs.
The Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the Kasubi fire, finalized the inquiry and submitted its report to the Minister of Gender, Labor and Social Development. Their findings are yet to be published.
Museveni urged them to ensure that all cultural sites including Bigo Byamugenyi and Ntusi in Sembabule and Omuso in Mubende are well protected, fenced off and their literature well documented for posterity.
He said he was willing to offer more support to ensure that the tombs are fully reconstructed and protected as some of the world heritage sites and also for boosting tourism.
The Katikiro of Buganda Eng.J B Walusimbi, Katikiro said they had already raised 800 million shillings as Buganda Kingdom which they used to renovate the Wamala Tombs were King Suuna was buried. He said culturally, they could not start with Kasubi tombs for the son without renovating the Wamala tombs for the father. The Katikiro who was accompanied by the Deputy Katikiro Sekimpe M. Ssmambo, Eng. Moses Kagimu, Ssabalangira, Nalinya Gertrude Tebattagwabwe, custodian of Kasubi Tombs, Amb William Nagagga. Private Secretary Office of the Katikiro, Arch Jonathan Nsubuga the Project Manager and Eng. H. R. Kibuuka said the 1.5 billion shillings donated by UNESCO will go towards risk management including firefighting.
“We want to thank you for this donation and for the support towards reconstructing the tombs. The structures will be made of steel while the roofing will be with grass. The challenge we have however is that grass is becoming very scarce,” he said.
The Kingdom hailed Museveni for his support towards the recently concluded Buganda expo through the Presidential Initiative on Tourism and said Buganda is looking for 100 acres of land for starting a cultural village as part of boosting tourism in the country. He said they would mobilize their subjects to contribute towards the remaining cost of reconstruction.
The total cost of reconstruction is estimated at 4.8 billion shillings, President Museveni pledged two billion shillings towards the reconstruction. Buganda Kingdom pledged half a billion shillings, UNESCO 1.2 billion shillings totaling to 3.7 billion leaving a deficit of 1.1 billion shillings.
The two billion shillings has been transferred to Buganda Kingdom Bank Account electronically. The Minister of Tourism, Wildlife and Heritage Ephraim Kamuntu, That of state for Tourism Agnes Akiror, the Permanent secretary Amb Patrick Mugoya and Ms. Rose Mwanja, Commissioner Museums.
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