BUGANDA Kingdom has applauded President Yoweri Museveni for supporting the Kingdom's tourism and other development programs.
The Kingdom's second deputy Katikkiro, Muhamood Sekimpi said government through the ministry of tourism and Presidential Initiative on Sustainable Tourism (PRESTO) supported this year's Kingdom's Exhibition.
He said government has been supporting the event since its inception in 2008 through teh ministry of tourism.
Speaking at the closure of the fifth Buganda Tourism Expo at Lubiri Palace Sunday, Ssekimpi also the kingdom minister for tourism told Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II that Government had played a key role in the success of the exhibition.
State House through PRESTO allocated funds to support exhibition. PRESTO was launched by President Yoweri Museveni in the United Kingdom early this year to support tourism exhibitions across the country.
The one-week annual event attracted over 300 exhibitors from Buganda region and other parts of the country. The exhibition was also embraced by participants from Kenya, Tanzania and Ethiopia.
"PRESTO installed free electricity and flood lights, graded and rehabilitated existing roads in the palace and installed piped water among others. These are key things in development and I think we should give credit to Government," Ssekimpi noted.
Speaking to New Vision after the event, the head of PRESTO, Naava Nabagesera said it was the President's directive to install the power and other facilities.
Nabagesera also a special presidential assistant on political affairs, said over sh50m was spent on power alone.
Ssekimpi also disclosed that Government has already wired sh2b pledge on the Kingdom's account in support of the reconstruction of Kasubi tombs. And soon we shall invite bidders for the construction of the tombs.
The Kabaka was welcomed amidst joy and jubilations from thousands of Buganda loyalists. He was welcomed by the Kingdom's premier, Eng JB Walusimbi and the care taker of Kasuubi Tombs, Gertrude Tebatagwabwe.
The Kabaka first commissioned the newly installed electricity in the palace and the newly graded road.
He later toured several stalls and was treated to entertainment from known local artists including Mesach Ssemakula and Ronald Mayinja (Eagles Production Band), Mathias Walukaga and other entertainment from different schools and cultural groups.
While delivering the Kabaka's message, Walusimbi thanked Government for its support.
He said Buganda is to set up a permanent cultural village where the exhibition will be relocated.
"This is a small place to accommodate all clans and other exhibitors. We are already looking for 100 acres of land to set a modern cultural village where all clans will get plots to showcase their items," he noted.
Currently only 25 clans can be accommodated out of the over 50 existing clans.
The new cultural village will include a zoo with all wild animals, a water body and a mini forest among other facilities.
Walusimbi said this will easily attract more tourists since everything would be accommodated in one place and easily accessible.
He said Buganda is committed to working with Government to promote various development programmes like modern agriculture to fight poverty among the people.
The Archbishop of Kampala, Cyprian Kizito called for unity among all Ugandans for quick development. "We are like the five fingers. If the thumb is not there, then the other four fingers will not be able to lift the ball. I think we should agree that all Ugandans need one another to move forward easily," Kizito noted.
He also called on people to embrace government programs to fight poverty.
During his visit to expo, the Vice President, Edward Ssekandi said Government is ready to support Buganda's tourism and called for corporation.
Closing the event, Kabaka served a cake to his subjects. The cake was baked by Ntake Bakery and Confectionaries.
The function was attended by several Buganda Members of Parliament, KCCA officials, religious leaders and Buganda officials among others.