19 May 2017

Uganda: Two Billion Needed for Kasubi Tombs Completion

Katikkiro Charles Peter Mayiga has said Buganda kingdom needs at least Shs 2 billion to complete Kasubi tombs.

He said this on Wednesday after a media tour of the tombs to assess the progress of the reconstruction. Mayiga also revealed the kingdom has so far spent Shs 4bn on the reconstruction.

Of the Shs 4bn, he said Shs 2bn came from government while the other Shs 2bn came from Ettoffaali [a crowd-funding project]money that was collected in a span of three years. Mayiga told The Observer last week that Ettoffaali fetched Shs 13bn in total.

"The reason we invited you here was to show the people of Buganda through you the progress so far made in the reconstruction of this place. This is not an ordinary house; the reconstruction focuses on certain norms that must be followed," Mayiga said.

The tombs that house the remains of four former kings of Buganda;Muteesa 1, Daniel Mwanga II, Daudi Chwa and Sir Edward Muteea II was gutted by fire in March 2010. The cause is yet to be established.

After assuming the office of the katikkiro four years ago, Mayiga promised that the tombs would be finished in less than a year. However, he said progress has been hampered by the limited number of experts for such a cultural structure, little supply of vegetal materials for roofing such as reeds and a specific type of grass, among others.

He called upon people who have these materials to avail them so they are bought or donated as Ettoffaali.

"This is a very labor-intensive exercise; that's why it is taking us all this long. Hopefully we will be done by July 2018," Mayiga said.

Speaking to The Observer at the sidelines of the tour, KadduKiberu, the head of the masiro reconstruction committee, said it has taken more than four months to teach construction workers on the site about the roofing job.

"There were very few people who knew how to do this work; for the last four months, the now 16 people working on this ceiling didn't know anything; they have just been trained," he said.

"Now that they have learnt how to do it, I'm very hopeful that by August this year, the construction of the ceiling, which really is the biggest work, will be done and with that, I can assure you the biggest part of the reconstruction work will have been completed."

Uganda

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