Baganda in Seattle celebrate Kabaka Mutebi’s 25 years on the throne

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Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II, the 36th Kabaka of Buganda

In Summary: The silver jubilee celebrations in Washington State, USA to mark 25 years of Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi reign on the Buganda throne was a blast!  A merry-go-around showcasing everything Buganda and Uganda; a cultural exhibition, entertainment, traditional music, dances, games, food, drinks, camaraderie– was a wealth of history and culture to behold! Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II ascended to the throne on July 31, 1993. The 36th King of the over 700-year-old Kingdom of Buganda, Kabaka Mutebi is the unifier of the Baganda, comprising of more than 52 clans living in 20 counties that make up the kingdom of Buganda located in central Uganda. The silver jubilee celebration in Seattle, code-named “Jaguza Buganda—Washington State” was the first to be held by the Baganda Diaspora in the United States. As trend-setters, Jaguza Buganda—Washington State, we shout out your name!  

Seattle, Washington State—Hundreds of Baganda living in Washington State, Idaho, and Oregon in the United States thronged  Steele Park, Federal Way near Seattle, Washington State to celebrate 25 years of the reign of Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi on the throne of Buganda. The Baganda were joined by fellow countrymen and women in the Diaspora hailing from all parts of Uganda. Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II ascended to the throne on July 31, 1993. The 36th King of the over 700-year-old Kingdom of Buganda, Kabaka Mutebi is the unifier of the Baganda, comprising of more than 52 clans living in 20 counties that make up the kingdom of Buganda located in central Uganda.

The silver jubilee celebration was organized by a group of Baganda living in Washington State, Idaho, and Oregon led by Ms. Grace Sendege Kiboneka, the deputy Representative of the Kabaka in the three states. The silver jubilee celebration, code-named “Jaguza Buganda, Washington State” took place at Steele Park, Federal Way on Saturday July 21, 2018, ten days before the official Buganda Kingdom celebrations on July 31, 2018 at Lubiri in Mengo near Kampala.   The Jaguza Buganda-Washington State was the first Silver jubilee celebration to be held by the Baganda living in the United States. A merry-go-around showcasing everything Buganda and Uganda; a cultural exhibition, entertainment, traditional music, dances, games, food, drinks, camaraderie– was a wealth of history and culture to behold!

“The silver jubilee celebration in Seattle to mark 25 years of Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi reign on the Buganda throne was a blast!” one of the event organizers told the EADM in an interview. “The weather was heavenly; it cooperated in such a way that neither the summer heat nor the rainy Washington State climate disrupted the outdoor fete,” an enthused merrymaker said. “The favorable weather portends well for a glorious Buganda of the future we are aspiring to restore, live in, and bequeath to our children,” another reveler told the EADM in a more reflective tone.

Owek. Moses Mayanja Ggayi, the Kabaka representative in Washington State, Idaho, and Oregon in the USA was the chief guest at the silver jubilee celebrations in Seattle.   He was accompanied by his wife Rose Nanyonga Mayanja, Prince Edward Nakibinge and his wife Mrs. Maria Nakibinge who are also members of the executive committee. The executive committee assists the Kabaka’s representative and his deputy to plan and implement Buganda-related activities among the Baganda in their areas of jurisdiction in addition to serving and defending the interests of the Buganda Kingdom.

Owek. Moses Mayanja Ggayi and his executive toured the cultural exhibition which showcased some Buganda handcrafts, artifacts, and others. Other activities during the day’s event included playing a traditional Buganda board game (Omweso), teaching youngsters how to peel bananas or plantains (matooke); a staple food for the Baganda, cultural dances by a group of children, and others. Owek. Moses Mayanja Ggayi reminded Baganda to love Kabaka, country, and work to unite and develop Buganda. “Continue teaching our children our Buganda culture, language, and the values we have cherished for over 700 years,” he said. He urged the youth to learn life skills and the counties that make up Buganda kingdom.

Moses Mayanja expressed appreciation to the chief organizer of the celebration Mrs. Grace Kiboneka, his deputy for staging a very successful silver jubilee event. “I salute you and your team of committed ladies and gentlemen for putting together an event and program of activities that reflect the Buganda culture and love for our Kabaka,” Engineer Moses Mayanja said. He also thanked members of his executive for dedicating their time and resources to work towards the preservation of Buganda culture and glory.

Members of the executive committee include Ms. Grace Sendege Kiboneka; Prince Edward Nakibinge & wife Maria; Kizza Vicent Musaazi; Isaac Lugoloobi; Staff Sgt Martin Kalule; Moses Ganaafa; Sayidi Lwanga; Timothy Nyonjo; and Engineer Hamuza Mujabi Bunya. Haji Hamuza Mujabi Bunnya is also the chairperson of the Buganda Development Cultural Association of Pacific North West (BUDECA) which was inaugurated by the Deputy Kattikiro of Buganda Ambassador Emmanuel Sendaula last May.

Others are Fredrick Mwanje; Obadia Mamuli Muwanga; Haji Abbey Semakula; and Wasswa Kalungi; and Engineer John Julius Muwulya Lwebuga, the Vice President of the Ugandan North American Association (UNAA).

Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II, the 36th Kabaka of Buganda being carried by some of his subjects  during his 24th Coronation anniversary in 2017.

The “Jaguza Buganda—Washington State” in Seattle, the first by the Baganda Diaspora communities in the United States to mark 25 years of the reign of Kabaka Muwenda Mutebi on the throne of Buganda will be followed by similar events planned across the USA in the coming months. But as trend-setters, Jaguza Buganda—Washington State, we shout out your name!  

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