Tuesday, December 27, 2016


As usual, Christmas to me means having a couple of days off duty,  meeting highschool mates; a bunch of relatives, attending money milking Church services and crown the day with  a sumptuous meal as big as a heap of potato mounds. This year's Christmas I decided to travel to Ibanda-the land where milk and honey compete with rivers for space.

I arrived in Ibanda on 23rd December 2016 at 8:00 PM. The clean small town is of course no exception of the poor urban planning in Uganda.
However, every street has a bar and lodge! There's a street of only bars, I counted over 150 bars on a single street! I entered one and asked for a local brew "tonto". I steadily started swallowing bits as my ears retired to the stories of mean looking men.

I realise Ibanda bar patrons are introverts who throw tantrums at each other when they are high, usually punctuated by their usual scary phrase "Ninkwita ninyeyita" loosely translated "I can kill you and thereafter kill myself". Hearing this I sneak out and dash to my place of aboard, which is a neatly designed apartment with girls whose smiles reach their foreheads.

In the morning, of 24th December 2016, I enjoyed a mouth watering breakfast, at least food shortage is not serious in Ibanda;  I settled for a cup of milk at ugx 500 and a plate heap of matooke and peas at ugx 2000.

 Having left kiruhura bending forward because of hunger the previous day, I decided to revenge on Ibanda food. I ate it like in a competition, I cleaned the plate with my fore finger and saved the dishwashers the task.
and drive towards Ibanda Catholic parish.

 There's a trading centre called Katooma. This trading centre should be made a tourist site by the Museveni regime- because everything bizarre is regarded a tourist attraction by his regime!

 People in Katooma skin animals when they are a live! I counted over 70 carcasses of cows! All their eyes were popping out as if begging for mercy. But alas! Katooma slaughter men have no mercy! It's at this point that I get to know about the cruel British colonial administrator Sir Harry George Galt who was speared to death at this very place.

 in 1905 at a mere age of 33(like Jesus). Galt is said to have been a cruel officer who treated the local people harshly. On 19 May 1905 As a newly appointed officer, Galt forced the local people to carry him on head from Toro through the current Kamwenge district up to
Whenever people could Galt, he never wanted them to rest until they reached Ibanda as he insisted "Paka Banda" loosely translated "Up to Ibanda". This reminds me of Museveni campaign catch phrase "paka last" meaning ruling Uganda up to the end of his lifetime on earth!

One day  people carried Galt up to Katooma which is about 2kms from Ibanda town, became tired and hungry and wanted to rest. Galt insisted not to be put down until they reach Ibanda.

a local fearless man called Rutaraka got annoyed with Galt's statement and he got a spear, headed towards Galt and threw it at him and it struck him in the chest. Galt died instantly.

The locals of Katooma were harassed and made to carry stones from as far as 40kms to cover his blood.

The pyramid of stones standing about 40feet high and 70feet wide still stands at Katooma trading centre up to today!

As I listen to this oral history, I reach for small change from my pockets and buy a roasted chunk of meat, dig my dog teeth into it and munch it without mercy.

I promise to write to Museveni to come and launch Katooma tourist site but should be keen enough not to say "paka last" Katooma men can quickly send him to his creator. I swear!

 I  celebrated Christmas mass at Ibanda Catholic parish, Kagongo, where a one Patrick Bitature donated his loot from government to God! God must have looked and wept. As I feel snow drop on my angular head. I look outside and catch a glimpse of the scorching sun! It's both winter and summer Christmas in Ibanda.

I promise Easter 2017. I will come back to Ibanda. I will invite my friends and we shall drive, eat, drink "paka banda" meanwhile Mr. Museveni, should be informed Katooma people need Katooma republic, they claim to have got independence before Buganda, and Uganda in 1905!


No comments:

Post a Comment