Uganda: Gadaffi coming to King Oyo's party
The New Vision (Uganda) -April 13, 2010 (via www.afrika.no):
Kampala (Uganda) — Libyan leader Col. Muammar Gaddafi is to attend this week the 18th birthday and coronation celebrations of the king of Toro, Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV.Looking forward to seeing photos.
Former premier Stephen Nyabongo said Gaddafi and at least 100 kings from all over the world are expected to attend the three-day event.
President Yoweri Museveni has also confirmed attendance and will be the chief guest. Officials said they expect all Ugandan kings, including Kabaka Ronald Mutebi, to attend.
"Kabaka Ronald Mutebi, who is also a guardian to the young king, will attend to see the person he has been taking care of come of age," officials said.
"The King of Kings (Gadaffi) is expected in Toro this Saturday," Nyabongo told journalists at the Sheraton Kampala Hotel yesterday.
Gadaffi got the title in August 2008, from over 200 African kings and traditional rulers, including a delegation from Uganda, when they met in the Libyan city of Benghazi.
Toro kingdom shares close ties with Libya. Gaddafi was instrumental in funding the renovation of the king's palace in 2003 and has been funding other kingdom activities.
Oyo will be taking over the administration of the kingdom from the regents who have helped him since he was crowned 15 years ago at the age of three, after the death of his father, Patrick Olimi Kaboyo II.
Explaining the significance of the day, Nyabongo said: "The king will outline his programme of action for the next five years."
He said Oyo will focus on education in the kingdom. "His immediate focus will be on informal education which forms a basis for primary and secondary education," the official said.
"The indiscipline and corruption we see are associated with the lack of informal education in the families and communities."
The king is also expected to call upon his subjects to build granaries like in olden times as a means to creating food security.
Being a youthful king, Oyo will also promote education which is particularly important to the youth, said James Murungi, the kingdom's protocol minister.
The Saturday coronation anniversary will be preceded by the celebration of the king's birthday on Friday beginning with a church service. After this, the youthful king will host a party named "Kasiki" in which he will be saying goodbye to childhood.
Leading singers Jose Chameleone, Juliana Kanyomozi, Radio and Weasel, Bobi Wine and Aziz Azion are expected at the party.
Minister Murungi said beautiful girls from Toro kingdom will be "paraded" at the kasiki and a cultural dance "amakondere" as the king becomes an adult.
The celebrations will be concluded on April 18, with court cases and judgements being handed over to the king. A special meal called "Oruhango rwa nyakacaki" (the Toro royal luncheon which is prepared by men) will be served. Traditionally, the king's food is not prepared by women.
Meanwhile, Oyo's mother Best Kemigisa has hailed Kabaka Mutebi for being an exemplary guardian to the young king. She said this when the Kabaka made a courtesy visit to Oyo's palace in Buziga in Kampala yesterday.
Mutebi also marks his 55th birthday today beginning with prayers at Kibuli Masque in Kampala.
Commenting on Oyo's coming of age, Mutebi said: "It has been my pleasure through the past years to be one of the guardians on the Omukama. This was not something I found a burden. Rather, it was taking a responsibility of looking after a young brother. It is special joy for me to be relieved of my responsibilities, to see that the Omukama has come of age and is taking on the responsibilities of Toro."