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Over 15,000 Expected To Attend Acholi Cultural Festival

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Ambrose Olaa, the Prime Minister Acholi Cultural Institution, says despite the budget shortfall they have registered, the event will commence on Thursday uninterrupted.
A dance troupe performs the Acholi traditional Otole dance during 2017 cultural Festival in Gulu Municipality. Photo By Julius Ocungi

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More than 15,000 people are expected to attend the third edition of Acholi Cultural Festival scheduled to start tomorrow at Kitgum Public school playgrounds in Kitgum Municipality.     

The festival is being held under the theme, “My heritage, My strength.”  Alex Oyet, the Coordinator Acholi Cultural Institution in- charge of East Acholi told URN in an interview Wednesday that they have planned to host more than 15,000 people with resources locally mobilized.

He notes that out of the total number of people expected, 4,600 comprising of 157 different groups are dancers who will perform various traditional dancers to revelers. Oyet says their committee has already started dispatching vehicles to different villages in the eight districts of Acholi to ferry entertainers and residents, adding that some of the invited guests are expected to start arriving today.    

He says the Acholi Paramount Chief David Onen Achana II has already camped in Kitgum to welcome his guests. Among the guests invited are the cultural leaders from Buganda, Lango, Bunyoro, Alur, Tooro, Jopadhola, Teso and South Sudan among others. 

“We are now putting final touches towards the preparation for the festival that kicks off December 12th. Invitations to all the people we wanted to invite for the festival have been sent out and we expect the best out of this year’s celebration,” said Oyet.

Budget shortfall

Ambrose Olaa, the Prime Minister Acholi Cultural Institution, says despite the budget shortfall they have registered, the event will commence on Thursday uninterrupted. Olaa disclosed that the cultural institution managed to secure only Shillings 130 million out of the budgeted Shillings 350 million for the festival.    

He says they had to scale the down the original budget and reschedule of some aspects of glamour such as football tournament, which had taken a large budget.  The football tournament dubbed Odilo Ker (Royal Ball) was to be played among selected teams from the eight districts of omoro, Kitgum, Pader, Gulu,  Amuru, Nwoya, Lamwo and Agago.   

 

//Cue in; “Ee are 80 percent…..

Cue out……………. festival is on”//

Olaa says more than Shillings 100 million has so far been given in kind for the event by different stakeholders and corporate companies. He says cultural enthusiasts should expect the true beauty of Acholi culture since the epicenter of Acholi culture lies in Kitgum district.    

“We encourage people to come and be part of the celebration,” he said. The festival will open at 9am accompanied by cultural performances. Different groups are expected to show case  a variety of traditional dishes, regalia, dances, folklore, dressing, songs, housing and history of the Acholi people. 

Acholi cultural festival launched by the Rwot Acana in 2017 aims at preserving and promoting the Acholi culture.