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Kabaka Opens Lukiiko with Some Rituals Altered Over Covid-19

Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II druming after opening the 28th Buganda Kingdom Lukiiko at Bulange, Mengo.

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Ritual practices usually performed as the Kabaka of Buganda opens the Kingdom Lukiiko sitting were today changed in the wake of corona virus pandemic.

The timing of the opening itself was the first major departure from the usual, as it ordinarily should have been opened in August soon after the the coronation anniversary. 

Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II this morning opened the 28th socially-distanced Lukiiko sitting at Bulange-Mengo. He said that the sitting was meant to see that plans for the Kingdom progress in the New Year.

In his speech, Kabaka Mutebi delivered his condolences to Ugandans who have lost loved ones to Covid-19, other diseases and the rampant murders.

Luganda //Cue in: “olukiiko luno…

Cue out:…nduguddewo.”//

The Lukiiko opening event which in the past happened every month of August was pushed to January 11th as the cultural institution devised means of observing the Covid-19 Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) alongside the different rituals usually performed at the function.

“In Buganda, there are three major annual functions namely the coronation anniversary celebrations, official opening of the Lukiiko session and the Kabaka’s Birthday but unfortunately because of Covid, it pleased his Majesty to amend ‘Ennono’ to ensure that we don’t put people at risk,” Noah Kiyimba the Kingdom Minister in-charge of Lukiiko, Cabinet and Information told Uganda Radio Network.

Our reporter today saw only 90 Lukiiko members-mainly new ones attend the special sitting out of the usual 200 who usually convene in addition to members of the public who follow the event from the gallery and others in the gardens on large screens.

Since the event is used to have new Lukiiko members individually narrate their lineage and prostrate before the Kabaka as the sign of respect and submission, these ritual acts were altered and the Kingdom had only four new members carry out the display of their appreciation before the King.

The names and brief description of the rest of the new Lukiiko members were all read out by Minister Kiyimba and they at once took the floor and bowed before the Kabaka in affirmation of their appointment and as a sign of submission. These included new leaders of different Kingdom Counties, Lukiiko members as well as representatives of youth, industrialists, farmers, accountants and others.

English //Cue in: “and usually you…

Cue out:…that is it.”//

Katikkiro Mayiga also emphasized that it was an unusual Lukiiko sitting since only a few had been selected to attend in observance of Covid-19 SOPs. He noted that since the 1993 Coronation, the Kabaka has for the past years opened the Lukiiko immediately after the coronation anniversary celebrations in July. Mayiga however said that this norm could not happen last year due to the pandemic. 

Luganda //Cue in: “nga ennaku…

Cue out:…bwebadde esoboka.”//  

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