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Why a Self Drive Safari in Uganda is the Best Option

Self Drive in Uganda

Self drive Car rental services are increasingly becoming a popular way of life in East Africa and in Uganda self guided safaris are the most affordable trips option if one is looking to explore what this East African country embraces for travelers who can easily traverse the country privately with a rental car! Self drive safari gives a visitor(s) an opportunity to explore and discover Uganda at their own pace and time unlike guided safaris. With wide range rental car options especially 4×4 vehicles and relatively good infrastructural network in Uganda, travelers are in better position to realize their self drive African safari dreams in the pearl of Africa with ease.

Many local car rental agencies in Uganda are very competent, pay attention to details and give value for your money. You can as well use them to book your gorilla trekking permit in advance so that you don’t missout on your preferred trekking date. In short rental agencies will ensure you have quality service that suits your safari interest and needs.

Below are the core reasons why you should choose self drive safari in Uganda over guided safaris?

Freedom to explore anywhere in the Country

Described as “The Pearl of Africa” by Winston Churchill in his book ‘My African journey’ published in 1908, Uganda is among the most beautiful countries in the world. with variety of water bodies (Lakes and Rivers), high mountains, thick tropical rain forests, beautiful savannah grasslands all these support wildlife existence, hence there is quite many amazing tourist attractions that you can visit on your trip to Uganda, from popular national parks to less known game reserves, you have a lot of destination options to choose from for your self guided holiday through the Pearl of Africa.

Designing your own itinerary for your self drive trip will enable you choose which attraction to include or exclude into your own itinerary. Then you be able to explore the chosen places at your own pace and time, hence more interesting than a guided trip that is strictly followed by your tour driver guide.

Array of Vehicle Options

There are variety of car types available for hire in Uganda. Such array range from classic and the luxury SUVs to customized safari Vehicles and vans, therefore lots of options await you. The most common sought cars by travelers on self drive safaris option are the 4wd vehicles mostly 4×4 Land Cruisers, Classic Safari Min Vans, budget Toyota Rav4s, among others. However for those who are interested in group tours, classic 4×4 Omni buses (coaster buses) are available to travelers. Be rest assured that you will travel safely and comfortably to and from your respective preferred destination.

Book your Vehicle Online

It is easy to book your rental vehicle online for your travel in Uganda. There are several car rental companies you will easily find on Google search. Settle with a name that you feel you can trust.

The booking process isn’t complicated at all, actually it’s so easy, fast and convenient. Confirming a reservation is all you need to secure a rental car for your trip.  Online booking solved lots of issues surrounding car booking, like there is no longer need to struggle or line up in long queues to reach the receptionist to make a booking. Travelers can basically place a booking via email or telephone call or even a WhatsApp. The vehicle of your choice will be booked for you on your preferred dates within the shortest time without necessarily you physically traveling to agency offices.

Go with a reputable car rental company

When choosing a rental vehicle for a trip, vehicle reliability is an important aspect to consider. With a growing number different travel platforms like Google, TripAdvisor, trust Pilot, Safari booking and many more positive reviews for past agency’s clients who have used their services are a great yardstick to securing a reliable vehicle that you can use for your upcoming holiday trip.

Choose to book with a car hire company that is recommended at least on one of the above Travel Platforms. Such can give you an idea to help you settle with a reliable car rental agency.

Self drive is by far Inexpensive in Uganda

To rent a car in Uganda can be cheaper than you may think, in fact most of car rental agencies in Uganda are surprisingly more affordable than elsewhere in East and Central Africa and what is interesting is that you can rent in Uganda and traverse the entire East African region as many agencies allow such arrangement.

For one to explore Uganda on self drive with ease, you need a strong 4×4 rental vehicle at pocket friendly price. Most rental agencies offer such type of vehicles from as low as US$35 per day for rental safari period in Uganda and there are absolutely no hidden costs.

The idea of 4×4 roof-top tent Land cruisers as a latest travel style is designed for travelers who would like to save on both transportation and accommodation, the rooftop tent rental is available in Uganda and good for a couple traveling for total adventure as you can stay a night in a typical African wild. One can as well choose 4×4 with ordinary camping gear for ground camping hence making your safari super affordable.

Hire on Unlimited Mileage

If you are looking to go on a self drive road trip in Africa, book with car rentals agency offers you a rental on unlimited mileage. Unlimited travel with no hidden costs is all you need for a great expedition, this means travelers can drive and explore the Uganda without any restrictions

It is of a great importance to rent a vehicle on unlimited mileage, as this will a traveler to enjoy flexibility while on a safari and freedom to explore more places if compared to guided tours.

Comfort at its Best

On top renting you a reliable, Car rental agency will rent you a Vehicle that offer total comfort any traveler would deserves while on self-guided safari in this part of Africa. Most agencies have dedicated team that are available to offer any assistance to clients at any time.

Self drive or self-guided trips are absolute getaways where travelers get many chances to retire the brain and have great moments to interact with Uganda’s amazing nature.

In nutshell, Self drive guided trips in a destination which is yet to be tapped like Uganda are more adventurous as you have opportunity to explore new interesting attractions that yet to be discovered, Uganda has not yet experienced the effects of mass tourism. Enjoy the freedom to explore at your own pace at your own time as well. Similarly the option offers the best close encounters with nature.

5 Common Cyber-attacks You’re Most Likely to Face

Common Cyber Attacks

One of the biggest security problems is perception: The threats companies think they face are often vastly different than the threats that pose the greatest risk. For example, they hire consultants to deploy state-of-the-art public key infrastructure (PKI) or an enterprise-wide intrusion detection system when really what they need is better patching.

The fact is most companies face the same threats — and should be doing their utmost to counteract those risks. Here are the five most common (and successful) types of cyber attack.

  1. Socially engineered malware

Socially engineered malware, lately often led by data-encrypting ransomware, provides the No. 1 method of attack. An end-user is somehow tricked into running a Trojan horse program, often from a website they trust and visit often. The otherwise innocent website is temporarily compromised to deliver malware instead of the normal website coding.

The maligned website tells the user to install some new piece of software in order to access the website, run fake antivirus software, or run some other “critical” piece of software that is unnecessary and malicious. The user is often instructed to click past any security warnings emanating from their browser or operating system and to disable any pesky defenses that might get in the way.

Sometimes the Trojan program pretends to do something legitimate and other times it fades away into the background to start doing its rogue actions. Socially engineered malware programs are responsible for hundreds of millions of successful hacks each year. Against those numbers, all other hacking types are just noise.

Countermeasure: Social engineered malware programs are best handled through ongoing end-user education that covers today’s threats (such as trusted websites prompting users to run surprise software). Enterprises can further protect themselves by not allowing users to surf the web or answer email using elevated credentials. An up-to-date anti-malware program is a necessary evil, but strong end-user education provides better bang for the buck.

  1. Password phishing attacks

Coming a close second are password phishing attacks. Approximately 60 to 70 percent of email is spam, and much of that is phishing attacks looking to trick users out of their logon credentials. Fortunately, anti-spam vendors and services have made great strides, so most of us have reasonably clean inboxes. Think of an effective phishing email as a corrupted work of art: Everything looks great; it even warns the reader not to fall for fraudulent emails. The only thing that gives it away is the rogue link asking for confidential information.

Countermeasure: The primary countermeasure to password phishing attacks is to have logons that can’t be given away. This means two-factor authentication (2FA), smartcards, biometrics and other out-of-the-band (e.g., phone call or SMS message) authentication methods. If you can enable something other than simple logon name/password combinations for your logons, and require only the stronger methods, then you’ve beat the password-phishing game.

  1. Unpatched software

Coming in close behind socially engineered malware and phishing is software with (available but) unpatched vulnerabilities. The most common unpatched and exploited programs are browser add-in programs like Adobe Reader and other programs people often use to make surfing the web easier.

Countermeasure: Stop what you’re doing right now and make sure your patching is perfect. If you can’t, make sure it’s perfect around the most exploited products, whatever they happen to be in a given time period. Everyone knows that better patching is a great way to decrease risk. Become one of the few organizations that actually does it. Better yet, make sure that you’re 100 percent patched on the programs most likely to be exploited versus trying unsuccessfully to be fully patched on all software programs.

  1. Social media threats

Our online world is a social world led by Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or their country-popular counterparts. Social media threats usually arrive as a rogue friend or application install request. If you’re unlucky enough to accept the request, you’re often giving up way more access to your social media account than you bargained for. Corporate hackers love exploiting corporate social media accounts for the embarrassment factor to glean passwords that might be shared between the social media site and the corporate network. Many of today’s worst hacks started out as simple social media hacking. Don’t underestimate the potential.

Countermeasure: End-user education about social media threats is a must. Also make sure that your users know not to share their corporate passwords with any other foreign website. Lastly, make sure all social media users know how to report a hijacked social media account, on their own behalf, or someone else’s. Sometimes it is their friends who notice something is amiss first.

  1. Advanced persistent threats

There is one major corporation that has not suffered a major compromise due to an advanced persistent threat (APT) stealing intellectual property. APTs usually gain a foothold using socially engineered Trojans or phishing attacks.

A very popular method is for APT attackers to send a specific phishing campaign — known as spearphishing

Countermeasure: Detecting and preventing an APT can be difficult, especially in the face of a determined adversary. All the previous advice applies, but you must also learn to understand the legitimate network traffic patterns in your network and alert on unexpected flows. An APT doesn’t understand which computers normally talk to which other computers, but you do. Take the time now to start tracking your network flows and get a good handle of what traffic should going from where to where. An APT will mess up and attempt to copy large amounts of data from a server to some other computer where that server does not normally communicate. When they do, you can catch them.

Other popular attack types such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting, pass-the-hash and password guessing

Lastly, avail yourself of a product or service that specializes in detecting APT-style attacks.

Uganda’s Luxurious “Must Visit” Safari Lodges

Ugandan Alcohol

Safari lodges are usually located in remote destinations in National parks, forests, and lakes with an abundance of wild game, birds, and local communities to interact with. Uganda’s Safari Lodges offers a crystal-clear opportunity to venture into vast nature and wildlife with a surety of safety and splendid game drives.

Must Visit – Safari Lodges

Paraa Safari Lodge

Paraa Safari Lodge
Paraa Safari Lodge

The lodge boasts of its closeness to the mighty Murchison Falls where its guests enjoy the thrilling experience of the incredible power of nature- a must visit
Paraa Lodge offers exquisite accommodation enclaves of lavish cottages, suites, double, twin, and single rooms, and en-suite private bathrooms all having breathtaking views of the Nile River from the balconies. The swimming pool makes a perfect place for a cool refreshing deep after a long day of Safari drive. Indulge in game drives, nature walks, Hot-air balloon Safari and bush breakfast

Chobe Safari Lodge

Chobe Safari LodgeEnjoy an authentic luxury experience and an adventure Safari in the park with quality service at Chobe Safari Lodge. This is lodge nestled in the Murchison Falls National Park. The 5-star lodge is a unique treasure with an amazing ambience and definitely unveils your dream Safari vacation to reality. While at the lodge, engage in activities like fishing, Safari drives, nature walks, and visiting Murchison Falls and Bush breakfast.

Clouds Mountain Gorilla

Clouds Mountain Gorilla
Clouds Mountain Gorilla

Wondering where to stay on a luxury gorilla safari in Uganda? Perfectly located in the southern part of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, the incredibly tranquil lodge setting, deep and yet elevated boasts of awesomely modern Cottages crafted out of the volcanic mountain stones with each featuring a spacious, comfortable bedrooms, bathrooms with walk-in-showers, lounge, and a blazing fireplace that keeps you warm and cozy.
Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge offers an incredible chance of a gorgeous view of the lush green rainforest. Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge is the highest lodge in Uganda over 2000 feet above sea level. Indulge yourself in wildlife views, bird watching, Gorilla treks, Virunga volcanoes and the rift valley.

Mweya Safari Lodge

Mweya Safari Lodge
Mweya Safari Lodge

Beautifully situated on a peninsula within the heart of the Queen Elizabeth National Park, Mweya Safari Lodge, is a truly charming lodge perfect for travelers who desire to connect with nature. It offers its guests, a mesmerizing view of the Kazinga Channel and the gorgeous mountains of the moon- Rwenzori Mountain.
Mweya Safari Lodge boasts its beautiful cottages and impeccably clean spacious and self-contained rooms. Other facilities include an amazing swimming pool with a great view of the channel, a Restaurant, a Business center, a gift shop, conference facilities, and the Tembo bar. Enjoy activities like; Birding, safari drives, water safari, chimpanzee trekking, Katwe explosion crater, and many others.

Apoka Safari Lodge

Apoka Safari Lodge
Apoka Safari Lodge

With a beautiful view of the Savannah Vegetation, Apoka Safari Lodge is perched on a small hill in the Kidepo Valley National Park. The wildlife can be heard and viewed effortlessly from every angle of the lodge- the rooms, Veranda, and private outdoor soaking tub.
The accommodation is first-class. Simply impressive and breathtaking with a central dining area overlooking the waterholes allowing you to view wild game coming to quench their thirst. The cottages are amazingly decorated with an African touch that beautifully blends the surrounding. Enjoy a perfect swim at the skillfully crafted swimming pool at the edge of the rock.

Semiliki Safari Lodge

Semiliki Safari Lodge
Semiliki Safari Lodge

The lodge is gorgeous tucked in a remote destination in the Semiliki Valley, Semiliki forest that houses an array of beautiful birds, baboons, monkeys, and forest elephants. The Semilik Safari Lodge hosts charmingly thatched roof golden-hued tents, en-suite bathrooms, each room has a veranda with a stunning panoramic view of the mountains and savannah forest, and rift valley. Activities include chimpanzee trekking, extensive walking trails, boat trips on Lake Albert, and Visits to the pygmies.

Choose to go on a getaway trip and immerse yourself into nature’s finest making a stop at one of Uganda’s luxurious Must stay Safari lodges. Enjoy!

Meet the falls in Uganda


Watching water fall naturally down the rocky cliffs is an exciting venture and a wonderful refreshment of the mind. The uniqueness of Uganda’s natural waterfalls is that; the water flows throughout the year and is reachable with clear trails or roads. The waterfalls are at their scenic best during rainy seasons, and best for photo shoots.

Let’s meet the most beautiful falls in Uganda

Murchison Falls

Murchison Falls
Murchison Falls

Murchison Falls –also known as Kabalega Falls, is a waterfall between Lake Kyoga and Lake Albert on the White Nile River in Uganda – the second-longest river in the world. It’s located within the Murchison falls game Park in the Northern region of the Albertine Rift Valley.
Tourists love cruising at the bottom of the falls as they watch the water splashing down with enormous force as the River Nile pushes through the gorge only 7 meters (23 ft) wide, and tumbles 43 metres (141 ft), before flowing westward into Lake Albert.
Enjoy hikes to the bottom of the falls and have an impressive view of the rainbows, devil’s cauldron, bird watching, and game drives; Simply breathe taking sight!

Aruu Falls

Aruu Falls
Aruu Falls

The graceful flow of the water over the slippery cascading rocks naturally arranged into a series of steps will definitely relax and mesmerize you with their intricate beauty. The Aruu Falls are located in Pader District; the best attraction site in Northern Uganda.
Whilst visiting Kidepo National Park, make a stopover and enjoy the sight of scenic cascading Aruu Falls. Nature walks, swimming, rock climbing, fishing, and bird-watching tourist enjoying the cool breeze and water spray of the fall

Sipi Falls

Sipi Falls
Sipi Falls

An impressive sight of the 100 meters high, Sipi Falls at the foothills of Mount Elgonlocated in Kapchorwa District in Eastern Uganda. Its character can go from the thunderous wall of water to graceful parallel strands of water exposing the Curtain Cave behind it.
Taking a natural shower under the fall or diving for a swim into the large plunge pool is a priceless experience. Take in the spectacular sight of the gorgeous Sipi Falls through bike riding, hikes, or dives into the water

Sezibwa Falls

Sezibwa Falls
Sezibwa Falls

One of the unique waterfalls in Uganda; a gorgeous oasis for nature lovers. It’s approximately 35km along Kampala- Jinja highway in Mukono District in Central Uganda. The smoky brownish water gushes between the two rocks and falls 7 meters high producing a hissing sound.
It is the nearest of all to the capital city of Uganda. It’s a hideout place isolated, quiet, and serene; perfect for family picnics or couples who would wish to enjoy their private time. It’s also a much-loved place for bird watchers, rock climbing, camping, and taking nature walks.

Karuma Falls

Karuma Falls
Karuma Falls

Karuma Falls on the white Victoria Nile 311 km from Kampala City on Gulu highway. The Karuma Falls comprise of a sequence of natural good-locking rock formations at the base of the Victoria Nile, within this place creating a spectacular ripple of water with a stunning white foam appearance.
Karuma Falls Bridge

Constructed in 1963, the Karuma Bridge crosses the huge waterfalls and connects the districts of Masindi and Gulu. The waterfall is a perfect spot for the bird, and wildlife viewing like buffalos, antelopes, monkeys, and baboons. Nature walks around the banks of the falls is an exciting activity for most tourists.Baboon along the Gulu High way on Karuma Bridge.

Uganda Zaabu, do not miss indulging your sight with at least one or two of the waterfalls mentioned here. Enjoy!

How Busongora Beat Rwenzururu To Rule Kasese


By Simon K. Turibamwe 

It’s always hard for the minority to rule the majority but only the Basongora, one of the minority tribes in Kasese have proven that they can rule over everyone in the district challenging the Rwenzururu establishment whose leadership and affiliations are on probation majority saying its agenda isn’t clearly understood.

In 2009 when the Government of Uganda accepted to officially recognize the Rwenzururu movement as a cultural institution or Kingdom, the Basongora who says are the indigenous of Kasese accepted and supported the idea. Much as the Toro Kingdom didn’t agree with the central government on Rwenzururu recognition at the time, the Basongora and Banyabindi who were still claimed by Toro to be her subjects contributed towards the occasion to grace the function that show King Mumbere being crowned as King on the 19th day of October 2009 at Kilembe Mines Golf Club.

After the recognition of the Rwenzururu Kingdom which originally was to accommodate Bakonzo and Bamba then other tribes in the districts of Kasese and Bundibugyo, the King did not appoint any none Mukonzo on his cabinet a move that sparked talks of discrimination from day one.

As years went on, these other tribes including Bamba, Babwisi, and vanoma in Bundibugyo district, Basongora and Banyabindi in Kasese district started moves to have their own Kingdoms established and publicly announced that they are not part and partial of Rwenzururu anymore.

On May 13th, 2012, the Basongora pronounced themselves and later on July 1st, 2012 crowned their own Bwebale Ivan their king with the title of Rutakirwa and gave name to him after one of the Busongora’s great king Rwiigi the fourth.

Much as the government officials never surfaced at the coronation of the Busongora Kingdom, President Museveni was present for the coronation of the Omudhingiya wa Bwamba Lt. Col Martin Kamya who rules over all none Konzo tribes in Bundibugyo district.

Save for Obudhingyiya bwa Bwamba in Bundibugyo districts, Rwenzururu Kingdom and its functionaries have been opposed to establishment of Banyabindi and Basongora Kingdoms saying that there can’t be two Kingdoms within one area. The Rwenzururu looked at this as a creation of a kingdom within a Kingdom.

With all the resistance from Rwenzururu, the Basongora went on to perform cultural roles on grounds that their culture and language is not similar to those of Rwenzururu.

Reasons for Busongora Kingdom’s Existence

Having exhibited seriousness within their territory and why they are not Rwenzururu, below are the reasons both government and individuals have decided to support the existence of Busongora Kingdom. Despite having the richest Kingdom on this earth planet the Basongora says they better have no kingdom than have a kingdom that is not developing and based on this background using the constitution they have made sure that any one not developmental will never be their ruler.

Historical Background

The Basongora with the help of reigning King Ndahura II Kashagama managed to prove beyond reasonable doubt that their Kingdom existed 5000 years ago and only disappeared for the last 100 years after it was conquered by the Britsish to pave way for the Toro Kingdom that was seceding from Bunyoro with the help of Capt. Lugard.

The Basongora presented lists of their former Kings, their origin and where they were buried in Uganda and the period they reigned which has also proved that all Kingdoms in Uganda and some parts of Tanzania, Rwanda, and Burundi originated from Busongora a fact that it’s older than any other Kingdom in East and West Africa. This has been one of the grounds that even professors of history accepted without doubt.

Unique culture

Much as the Basongora are pastoralists like any other group related to the Bachwezi, they have continued to exhibit that their culture is so unique from the rest. While establishing their kingdom which they said were reinstating in 2012, the elders said that they were feeling so sad to see their children in schools being forced to learn the norms of Bakonzo as if they had no own cultural norms and traditions. The Bakonzo who are of the Ndu dialect, have a traditional dance that makes women jump and spread their legs wide while the Basongora who are of the Ntu dialect remains seated while performing traditional folk songs. Though all tribes in Uganda front a drum as the major musical instrument, the Basongora never plays the drum or any other object that makes a noisy sound apart from the Enanga. The Enanga will be played by women seated with their legs folded and covered under their long dresses (suits) while men will stand holding sticks and make moves with their arms wide spread holding sticks.

Still, on culture there was no way Bakonzo or Rwenzururu whose main food is Bundu (cassava flour), sombe (cassava leaves), and Fish would force Basongora whose only favorite is milk and yogurt (Ikyivuguto/amakamo).


The Basongora who equalize their cows to human beings in terms of treatment and respect don’t only stop there but also love the environment because they know that their lives and those of their animals depend on the environment. The Musongora will plead with you to have him punished but not to pollute the environment in any form. The Basongora culture also prohibits hunting or killing female animals for meat while Bakonzo is hunting experts and meat lovers.

None violent

They make good warriors while armed with sticks but they are not provocative to open wars against others and they like solving grievances through dialogue. Some elders revealed that the Basongora liked dialogue because they realized that violence is destructive during the days they were at war with foreign armies.

With this, the Basongora said can’t be part of Rwenzururu whose culture is even known by the true Bakonzo which is characterized by violence and forceful means.

The Bukonzo vs Rwenzururu

When King Mumbere’s father and comrades launched the Rwenzururu rebellion or Rwenzururu movement a rebel group that fought the Toro Kingdom accusing Batoro of oppression, marginalization, and discrimination among other tribes, they managed to convince all none Batoro that struggle would benefit them all.

However, after the recognition of Rwenzururu as a Kingdom, the true Bakonzo were the first to question the legality of Rwenzururu as others said that the Kingdom should be called Bukonzo since the area was known as Bukonzo and people called Bakonzo while the Rwenzururu was the group of fighters. Based on this other tribes said would accept working with Bakonzo but not Rwenzururu that had no geographical location and existing people or culture. Before Rwenzururu got recognition some senior citizens had warned the government not to recognize Rwenzururu but Bukonzo because the characteristics of Rwenzururu were not clear and that it would change the identity of Bakonzo to be called Banyarwenzururu something that would have a negative impact on the community.

Minutes after his recognition as King Rutakirwa Rwiigi IV Bwebale at Muhokya Palace, he said he would respect King Mumbere because the government had put him in place but would never respect the functionaries of Rwenzururu.

To provide alternative leadership

To prove that they had an alternative leadership for peace and stability in the Rwenzori sub-region, especially in Kasese which is characterized by unresolved conflicts, the Basongora said must focus only on developmental issues and give no attention to anything that hinders peace or development.

When he assumed the office of the King, King Ndahura II Kashagama asked all his subjects never to engage in anything not developmental if they are to make Busongora a model community. He promised that he would only concentrate on development and not conflict with any member of the society or central government because they needed each other and that only teamwork is the only way to develop.

To show his determination, King Kashagama who assumed office in 2016 has managed to construct his own Palace, develop a Tourism Centre, construct roads, a borehole for safe drinking water, and lobby universities and other learning institutions for scholarships among others for his subjects. The Basongora who were listed by UNESCO to be the most endangered minority ethnic group in the world, are now proud that their identity is back on record not for the bad but for the good.

The Busongora kingdom has also been able to attract investors, partners, and friends from Western countries to support the Kingdom’s developments. With support from donors and the government, the Kingdom is planning to establish a wildlife treatment center, university, and hospital inside the Ikamiro Palace.

Recently the Busongora Kingdom was ranked by cultural experts as the model Kingdom of the 21st Century in terms of cultural diversity development.

None discriminative

Busongora elders who were interviewed by this reporter also revealed that before they thought of reinstating the kingdom. Their priority was to see a united community because the majority of the population that neither belonged to Toro nor Rwenzururu were left in limbo because were not accommodated in any of the Kingdom.

This the Kingdom that accommodates Basongora, Bakingwe, Banyankore, Bakiga, Banyarwanda, Bagabo, Batuku, Batoro, Banyaruguru, and a section of Bakonzo who are opposed to Rwenzururu establishment among other community living in Kasese district.

People who are not Basongora don’t only subscribe to the Kingdom but are also included in the Cabinet and technical team of the kingdom.

Robert Kyomya Kashamura who is the chief advisor of the king revealed that the inclusion of the other tribes in the kingdom was to exhibit their will for co-existence because there is no community that lives in isolation without neighbors. He adds that: “Busongora is the center of all tribes in Uganda and therefore staying or working alone may not solve the community issues. It should also be noted that a kingdom that wants to isolate other people living within is not for development but for other missions I may say subversive but for us, we believe in co-existence.”

Yosam Nyamutare the Kingdom’s prime Minister said that because they wanted to see Busongora provide alternative leadership, they had to be accommodative to whoever is interested to stay or work towards the development of Busongora, and no one is compelled to subscribe to the kingdom of Busongora because the subscription is optional.

Nyamutare further says that instead of compelling people to subscribe to the kingdom, the kingdom has a duty to prove competence in service provision so that people are convinced by the deeds not the word of mouth or force.

“The Kingdom is not politics where people are convinced to support a certain political party but the only way is to show everyone that you are doing the right things and focused on development,” said Nyamutare the Kingdom’s Prime Minister.

Pan-African spirit

King Ndahura II Kashagama, who recently received a certificate of appreciation and a medal for his contribution towards the promotion of Pan-Africanism, has also been telling the Basongora to imitate their ancestors and treat all Africans as one family. The Basongora believe that they are the ones who mothered Africans and therefore all Africans are equal and that no one should be discriminated against on race or tribe but they are Africans.

People power factor

Busongora is the only Kingdom in East and West Africa where people have more powers than the king. To avoid dictation by the King and prime Minister, both the king and prime minister are chosen by the people in an open election.

The Busongora Kingdom constitution gives powers to the council of accession (elders’ council) to choose who should be the king or prime minister.  The same council also has got powers to dethrone, remove or punish or force a king to resign if proven guilty of nonperformance. The council of accession is the Alfa and Omega arm in running the Kingdom affairs.

Simon Kagame, the Minister in charge of constitutional affairs revealed that the constitution doesn’t stop at taming the powers of the top leadership but also locks out people who drink alcohol from being nominated or appointed Kings. He adds that this constitution was designed to avoid future problems in the kingdom where individuals would impose themselves on people to claim to be rightful kings.

“We have had scenarios where people are claiming to be right kings to oppose the existing ones and this is because they have no due process of appointing kings but if some are chosen through a due process not even God will dispute his appointment,” said Kagame the Minister for Constitution affairs and institutional development.

Moses Kibwiizi a minister in the Kingdom also said that whoever developed the idea to give powers to the people and not the King deserves an accolade because in most cases leaders use their powers because they are final to mislead people they are supposed to lead.

“Where the King or any leader has the final word can use his powers to give wrong or misleading instructions to the subject and destroy the Kingdom,” Kibwiizi said.

The Glamorous Cable – Stayed Bridge


It is well known as the Source of the Nile Bridge or the New Jinja Bridge that replaced the deteriorating 1954-built Nalubaale Bridge. The Source of Nile Bridge is the longest bridge in Uganda and 5th longest bridge in the African continent at 525 metres (1,722 ft) long and 22.9 metres (75 ft) wide

The glamorous cable-stayed bridge across the Victoria Nile located at Njeru, a suburb of the city of Jinja – Uganda; aroused excitement among people after its completion in October 2018. One of the aims of constructing this bridge was to enhance tourism with the addition of this iconic signature beauty of the gigantic concrete and steel structure is 72 harp-like white cables connecting the bridge deck to two 69-meter tall inverted-Y pylon towers that are well-lit in the night. It is said to look like the ‘Anzac’ Bridge in Sydney, Australia.

Anzac Bridge – Sydney, Australia
Source of the Nile Bridge – Jinja, Uganda

The overall width of the New Jinja Bridge is 22.9m wide. It has a dual carriageway 7.0m wide with a pedestrian walkway of 2.25m wide on both ends with a projected lifespan of 120 years.

Galiwango – A Gorilla Film in Luganda Promoting Conservation

Galiwango Film

Mountain Gorilla infant rides dorsally on mother. This great ape speaks out and educates about the forest, gorilla conservation and the problems it faces in the wild. Solomon W. Jagwe, a Ugandan native, has written and is currently directing a mountain gorilla conservation film titled “Galiwango, Obulamu Bwe’Kisodde”, meaning “The Life of the Gorilla”.

This 3D animated film was made in 2009 and it uses animations to send out the message. The aim of this film is to raise awareness about the plight of the mountain gorillas and the threats that they are exposed to. Although there are a variety of threats facing gorilla populations today, central threats include degradation and loss of habitat, direct exploitation, diseases, as well as the impact of war and political unrest in various range states.

Jagwe’s goal is not only to raise awareness and educate, but to also appeal on a local level to the younger generation of Ugandan’s and to catalyze conservation action on their part. It is for this reason that the film is written in Luganda, Uganda’s most widely spoken language. If promoted, this is one of the best tools to educate masses about gorilla conservation in Uganda.

Gorilla Saver deeply supports this kind of educational approach and this film is special in the sense that it is being made in a local language. We encourage and invite potential donors to support this project. To find out more about the project, please go to www.galiwango.com.

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The traditional dance for the Bakonzo Culture


The Bakonzo sometimes called Banandi is a group of the Bantu-speaking people living in the districts of Kasese, Bundibgyo, Bunyangabu, and the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Bakonzo mainly have two types of dances which are ceremonial.

Ekikibi Dance

This is the dance that I would call breaking of the chest and the back, it is for both men and women, it is majorly performed in functions that attract happiness say during marriage functions, and music competitions among others.

It involves dancing together of a man and a woman, it’s best attractive when performed by people who know how to break the back properly while standing on one and a half feet.

It has a specific drum beat (the medium or the biggest of all the drums) and then other more two which makes it attractive or possibly one may work in absence of others.

Omukumu Dance

This is the dance performed mainly during the closing out of a burial ceremony (erisesya ekiriro), it may take up to one week while dancing, and every day people go early to the home of the deceased to perfume this ritual.

This dancing has other many categories including, omukobo, eluma, amasinduka, amahande among others

Omukobo involves dancing while turning to the next neighbor as you keep rotating in a circle form as well as singing. There’s also the beating of three drums, xylophones, and other instruments.

Eluma evolves all the omukobo instruments with flute leading them all to compose different songs.

Mukumu dance is neither for women nor for uncircumcised men

Mukumu dance is not performed in every one’s burial but for men who went for circumcision in Bwamba, Bundibughyo district (elhusumba) and not performed for women.

This type of dance has a leader called “Kabira”, is the person who is in-charge of everything involved in the dancing process say if you are to dance with a neighbor then you start with him among other things.

In the early years of 1930’s and later, men would arrange and go to Bwamba (lhusumba) in Bundibugyo district for circumcision, this was one of the things to prepare for descent burial rituals and respect in public.

They would walk in the mountains of the Kasese district, through the upsides of Nyakigumba, Katebwa, and then to Bwamba for the Circumcision function and return later after recovering.

The function would be organized for those returnees’ recognition of being rightful men to stabilize in public.

During those times and up now, men who are not circumcised are not considered in public like normal ones, they can’t even be recognized to speak in public.

ESUUKA; An Adorn of Royalty


Esuuka is one of the most precious ornaments a woman can wear especially that from Tooro, where beauty and royalty are a daily observation. An emblem of a true Mutoorokati (woman from Tooro), this easy wearing distinctive attire is the crown of beauty – solely the main reason Tooro women stand out on many occasions – traditional or elite worldwide.

Ever wondered what a sexy elegant woman with holiness looks like? A woman adorned in a Tooro Suuka will strikingly stick in your mind and hypnotize your personality as you appreciate the true likeness of being African.

Generation to generation, Esuuka has managed to prevail the test of time and threats of modernity – growing stronger and more popular among adults, young women and girls. It is the official wear for women and girls from Bunyoro , Tooro and those attached comprising of three major components including; ekiteteeyi (dress) wore on top of ekitambi (wrap skirt around the waist) and the Suuka (sheet of cloth between 5 to 6metres long) from where the name of the whole outfit is derived usually wore up to the feet.

The Tooro Suuka is more so like a red carpet gown, it covers full body length including the feet.
What makes it special is the way the Suuka is wrapped around the shoulders with its flap falling on one of the shoulders mostly on the right.

The Suuka is folded over the collar bone then tucked under arms wrapped around the whole body to the feet. The folds are kept in place by hand or pressed by the upper arms in position as shown by images in this piece

Left, the length of esuuka, dress and rapper (ekitambi), right batooro women rocking esuuka

Esuuka’s influence on women is one of the most significant in Tooro Culture; it portrays a well groomed woman with respect and humility – on the minds of everyone before they set out to an official or traditional event.

The Suuka is fabricated in such a way that keeps a woman habitually modest and respectful; it is by design a woman wearing Esuuka cannot jump out of her seat, run, speak or dance offensively in front of people. She can only walk or dance (if she has to) majestically with the lowest pace exuding the highest sense of privilege and admiration.

On an official Tooro ceremony or event, women not wearing Esuuka are ushered in at the back where they are not easily visible while those wearing the treasured Suuka are honoured in front row seats.

On a Kweranga (introduction) ceremony, the bride to be is obliged to wear the Suuka every time she comes out for presentation; it is unethical for a bride to walk out of the house dancing, raising her head and moving fast – the reason slow sentimental music is required to facilitate a majestic dance or walk of honour locally known as kuhuubya.

Batooro girls walking out of the house in esuuka on an introduction

It is eminent reality this phenomenon must be observed and respected since it’s the window that
exhibits the true essence of traditional fashion in Tooro. In recent times, Esuuka and its respects have been faced with immense infiltration from other cultures – not wearing it properly (imitating other cultures), dancing and moving fast while wearing it or dressing otherwise among others to official and traditional functions.

This has been largely due to lack of heritage education and influence of modern fashion trends that are on the
high rise every time. However, the current generation is realizing the value and uniqueness of this special tradition and is working so hard re-embracing it and lifting it up to where and how it is supposed to be alongside modern fashion inclinations.

It is actually OK accessorizing Esuuka with jewelry –necklaces, bracelets and crowns as long as they do not affect its etiquette.

The Queen Mother of Tooro Kingdom Best Kemigisa Akiiki is  the most iconic woman that has graced the Tooro Suuka diligently for all time, she has epitomized and showcased the core of the Tooro Suuka worldwide. She is rarely  seen  on a public function without the Tooro Suuka.

Bakonzo names and their meanings


For every Mukonzo, the surname must tell the position in birth counting whether the child is the first, second, or third, up to the last born.

Who they are?

The Bakonzo, sometimes called Bayira or Banande, are a Bantu-speaking group of people in western

Uganda and eastern DR Congo. In Uganda, they are concentrated in Kasese and Bundibugyo districts.

Others live in Bunyangabu and Ntoroko districts. The Bakonzo are the subjects of the Rwenzururu Kingdom, whose king is Charles Wesley Mumbere.

The Bakonzo name their children according to their order of birth.


The number matters. According to Grandfather (sokulhu) Stifano Bwambale Murokole, a resident of Kakone village in the Mahango sub-county in Kasese District and a veteran Kikonzo culture advisor in the Bahira clan, the names of the Bakonzo were given to boys in seven birth ranks, whereas those for female children are eight.

Have you ever considered the origin of your name? Fred Stephen Bwambale of Enganzi News writes that for anyone schooled in the culture of the Bakonzo, it is easy to tell the order in which someone was born just by knowing that person’s name.

 “Birth ranks” in this regard, is the order in which the children born of the same mother and father follow each other, ranging from the oldest to the youngest.

For every Mukonzo, the surname must tell whether the child is the first, second, or third born, up to the last born.

Some other names are given depending on the situation like war, famine or massacres at the time the bearer was born.

According to sokulhu Murokole, “The Bakonzo women have for a long time been among the most fertile in Africa. By the 1990s, some strong women were producing up to 16 children. Such a woman would have a chance to finish all the male and female names”.

He listed the names given to the boy children, from the firstborn, as; Baluku, Bwambale, Masereka, Kuule, Thembo, Mbusa, and Ndungo.

The female names are Musoki or Masika, Biira, Kabugho, Mbambu, Ithungu, Kyakimwa, Nziabake, and Bulhubasa.

“These names are not given without considering who was born before who. You cannot name your firstborn Masereka. This will be a disorder because Masereka is the third-born male child,” Murokole said.

One must be wondering where the name “Mumbere” is, which is sometimes mistaken for a king’s title because Omusinga Charles Wesley Mumbere is not mentioned in the order.

“Mumbere” is another name for “Baluku” (the first-born male child). Others say “Kambere” to refer to the same person – Mumbere.

However, the same child can be named “Nzanzu” if both parents were virgins at the time they consummated their marriage. A first-born female produced by such parents is named “Kanyere”.

Murokole further explains that “Kasoke” and “Musoki” are names for a firstborn who is male and female respectively, if the child’s paternal and maternal grandparents are still alive by the time he or she is born.

The first time the parents produce a child of a different sex from the first one, the child is named “Muhindo” if male or female, and “Mbindule” if female.

 Bakonzo names are given depending on the situation at birth

“Bethubanji” is another meaningful name given to the firstborn who is able to see the same light as his or her parents’ grandparents. This means the baby has its grandparents alive at the same time their parents are also living. This child is referred to as “Akatsukulhu,” meaning a person who has two generational grandparents.

Much as death is something that everyone fears to associate with, the Bakonzo have names that tell that someone was born after the other child/children had died. If this person is male, he is named “Kibaya”, “Kyithi”, “Bisogho”, “Kamabu” or “Bisiika/Kyirere”, whereas females in that category are named

“Mutsuba”, “Kyabu” or “Bisiika” and other names like bahwere.

The twins are named according to their order of birth too. The first to come out is named “Nguru”, while the second is “Ndobya”. The child who follows twins is named “Kitsa”, followed by “Kamalha”. These apply to both sexes.

There are also situational names such as “Muthende” for a child born when boys had gone for a circumcision initiation ceremony, “Byerire” for one born during time of great harvest and many other proverbial names like Byanzira when one is born in along the way.

However, despite the unique way of naming children, this culture is facing extinction because of factors such as the modern campaign of family planning in which parents are encouraged to produce a number of children they can easily provide for.

Amos Bakalhania Kule, a resident of Kaberere in Kyondo Sub-county in Kasese District, attributes the fast extinction of some of the names to people drifting away from their culture by opting to copy names whose meaning they have no idea of.

“Our people are running away from their culture and that is why our culture is facing destruction. Why should someone copy a British or American name and make his child known by that imported name instead of popularizing the name Baluku, Bambale or Masika?” he wonders.

Amos said much as family planning is now necessary because of the prevailing economic situations and scarcity of land for production, it is important to preserve the culture by giving the few children the original names.

For Stifano Murokole, the Bakonzo naming culture will only persevere if all [birth ranks] children are produced and bear the names.

“It is not preserving when you produce five and give them the right names. What we need to do is to produce all the children because these names were given by our ancestors for a reason,” Murokole suggested.

Fr. Balinandi Kambale Raphael of Kasese Diocese, also a Lhukonzo literature author, said the Bakonzo women are still fertile to fulfill God’s command to “produce and subdue the world”.

“It is poverty that forces the people to produce few children but it is also ignorance of culture that they are not giving those few their real names. The women are still fertile and if possible, they should produce all [birth ranks] the children to fill these names,” said the priest, who also teaches Lhukonzo language and culture on local radio station Kasese Guide Radio every Tuesday.

He said very soon, he will release a book giving the names of the Bakonzo, with their meanings with the hope the young generation will understand and use them to make the culture consistent.

Rwenzururu kingdom speaks out:

The prime ministerial commission Rt. Hon Guardi Mbayahi, is another man disturbed by the near extinction of some of the names of the Bakonzo.

He said copying other names from the neighboring ethnicities is “poisonous to our culture,” adding that children need to be named according to their birth ranks.

“People are copying the names of our brothers the Banyankole and directly translate them to name their children. The Bakonzo have not been having names such as “Lwanzu”, which is from Rukundo,

“Athwanzire” from Natukunda and “Apipawe” from Ahimbisiibwe among the Banyankole. These names are fronted by parents ahead of the birth rank names such as Baluku, Thembo and Mbusa,” he said.

The OBR premier also said the kingdom cabinet has already deliberated on this growing concern with a view of officially writing to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) to advise on how to preserve the names.

“The cabinet has already discussed this concern. As Bakonzo, we have a unique culture worldwide because we are well named according to our birth ranks. We need Unesco to help preserve this culture that is now threatened,” Rt. Hon Guardi lamented.

There are fears that with the names of the Bakonzo being ignored by parents while naming children that the 14 clans may also be at the brink of not being cherished.

Each clan among the Bakonzo has a totem and “fake enemy”. The “fake enemy” is another clan that is jokingly an enemy of the other.

For instance, the Bathanji clan members will joke that “Balegha bahwere” (the Balegha clan is finished) when they see a new moon. These jokes, elders say, were used to make the young ones understand their clans better. The Bakonzo clans that give the same names are Abakira, Abasu, Abahambu, Abahira,

Abaswagha, Ababinga, Abathanji, Abaseru, Abanyisanza, Abalegha, Abahinda, Abakunda, Abalumba,

Abasongora (not the cattle keepers’ tribe).

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