Tension As Tooro, Rwenzururu Fight Over Royalties

The cold war between Tooro and Rwenzururu Kingdoms in western Uganda is taking a new twist as both institutions demand for royalties from the central government.

The relations between the two cultural entities have been frosty since 2009 when Rwenzururu was recognized as a separate kingdom, effectively breaking away from Tooro.

Omusinga wa Rwenzururu Charles Wesley Mumbere
Omusinga wa Rwenzururu Charles Wesley Mumbere

A year later, Charles Wesley Mumbere Iremangoma was installed as the Rwenzururu king, a demand that started in 1962 when Mumbere’s father Isaaya Mukirania led a group of Bamba and Bakonzo leaders to rebel against Tooro Kingdom.

Mukirania died in 1966 and left Mumbere, then a young boy as his heir. Despite the installation of Mumbere as king in 2000, Tooro never officially warmed up to its new neighbour, even though they never openly denounced Mumbere.

On Saturday, Rwenzururu marked the 47th coronation anniversary of Omusinga Mumbere, at which function Omusinga Charles Wesley Mumbere said the government should pay royalties to his kingdom. Tooro Prime Minister Steven Kaliba was in attendance, the first time a high ranking official from Tooro had attended an event organized by Rwenzururu.

Though he didn’t mention the resources, Mumbere has in the past argued that Rwenzururu should be paid royalties from resources which include Katwe salt lake, Kilembe Mines, Hima cement factory and the Queen Elizabeth national park all in Kasese district.

Tooro Kingdom's King Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru IV
Tooro Kingdom’s King Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru IV

However, Red Pepper Online has established that Tooro Kingdom wants government to pay royalties for the same resources. The resources are some of the items that have been compiled by the team that is negotiating with the government for the return of the Tooro kingdom assets.

In a telephone interview, the Tooro Premier Steven Kaliba told local media that he is surprised that Rwenzururu is demanding for what still belongs to Tooro.

Kaliba says that the royalties can’t revert to Rwenzururu and yet Tooro hasn’t been receiving the royalties since the restoration of cultural institutions in 1993. Asked if the Kingdom should be compensated, Kaliba said the matter will be decided by the Kingdom Parliament, the Orukurato.

5 thoughts on “Tension As Tooro, Rwenzururu Fight Over Royalties

  1. Please Tooro, with due respect, don’t insinuate conflict. Kasese does not sound like Kabarole. Rwenzururu does not stretch to Kabarole nor does Kabarole stretch to Kasese. You have no business asking for what belongs to Rwenzururu Kingdom. The boundaries are clear. PM of Tooro, this is an insult to us the Bakonzo, and we will not stomach much of this. Take a simple case of Buganda, does it claim to own property in Bunyoro, even if it could have extended its influence? Stop jocking, don’t draw bad blood between the two tribes. For now, we really would not want to say, “Ekitaka ni kyethu”. For God and

  2. The Tooro kingdom was an occupation force that came in 1830. Even where the current palace is and the entire Fort Portal, up to river Muzizi initially belonged to the Rwenzururu. It is the colonialists who pushed us away using the Tooro. Our silence should not be taken for stupidity and we do not want to be provoked. The Batooro can be told to go back to Bunyoro.

    1. And Bakonzo can be told to return to Ituri forest or even Mt Elgon! You see the logic? Human history is largely written in blood and conquest. It does more harm than good when the once oppressed turn themselves into oppressors. When that one happens; humanization becomes a lost cause. Have you been silent? Not really. For sure you have been active doing all sorts of things; some reactionary, others sinister, evil, etc

  3. Brute, Rwenzururu Kingdom broke away from Tooro Kingdom and is recognised by Uganda. Just like Bunyoro does not claim any royalties from Tooro and other territories that were annexed by Buganda Kingdom, so it be for Rwenzururu Kingdom. It hurts and opens up the healing wounds of the Bayiira when you demand royalties from resources that nolonger fall under your Kingdom. Period. If the Bayiira are to claim theirs-“Ekitaka nikyethu”, then Tooro Kingdom has no land at all because the present day Palace of Tooro is erected at a place where a Mukonzo Chief-Ruhandika had his small palace before the coming of the imperialists and colonialists of the Bayiira (Capt Lugard and Tooro Prince).

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