Prime minister of Buganda Kingdom, Katikiro Charles Peter Mayiga, Prince Cryspin Jjunju Kiwewa alongside Kingdom ministers, on Friday August 30, 2019 visited Kasubi to assess progress and launch the final stage of restoration works at Kasubi Royal Tombs.
During the working tour of the site, Prince Junju installed a cultural pole as a sign of finalising the work. The pole at the entrance was erected on behalf of the Kabaka to guide the construction process.
“After this customary function, I am optimistic that very soon, works at Kasubi Tombs will be complete,” Junju said.
On his part, Katikiro Mayiga noted that, “Many people thought the works had stalled which is wrong. We have been working tirelessly throughout the years and the progress is visible now.”
He explained that the construction and architectural works of the cultural site is not like those of other structures; because it is founded on tradition with norms and rituals that have to be followed during the construction process.
“This is a unique site with traditional attachments which needs a lot of work with the special people needed to perform various tasks. That’s why work has been slow in the past because we had to follow rituals,” he added.
As the final stage takes shape, it’s important to note that the thatching technique at the tombs is quite unique and is prepared in conical bundles which are laid onto the roof without being tied, except for the first layers at the bottom.
The chairperson of the reconstruction committee, Kaddu Kiberu, informed Junju and Mayiga that most materials were available adding that reconstruction works were steadily progressing.
The Kasubi Tombs, is a burial ground for four kabakas (kings of Buganda) including Mwanga II, Mutesa I, Edward Mutesa II and Daudi Chwa among other members of the Baganda royal family. Some of the major buildings at the site were almost completely destroyed by a fire in March 2010, the cause of which is yet to be known. As a result, in July 2010 it was included in the list of World Heritage Sites in Danger.
The tombs sit on a 64-acre of piece of land in Kasubi-Nabulagala in Rubaga division
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) listed the tombs as a World Heritage Site, which many have described as “one of the most remarkable buildings using purely vegetal materials in the entire region of sub-Saharan Africa”.