Amos Tayebwa
The Leadership of Mbarara City in conjunction with the partners and stakeholders had initially scheduled 3rd and 4th December 2022 for a mega festival/ carnival that was meant to welcome and celebrate the City Status. But sources have it that the festival has been rescheduled up to next year over time constraints and other factors
Among the factors that have caused the postponement of the Mbarara City festival includes the issue of engaging the President of Uganda whom the stakeholders insisted that he should be the one to come and honor this function as the Chief Guest.
Speaking to our reporter, Assey Abirebe, the Mbarara City Town Clerk revealed that because of the pressure from the essential stakeholders of Mbarara City who insisted that such a mega festival deserves the president as chief Guest, the leadership of Mbarara City have realised that they should postpone this event up to a later date that will be communicated when the president confirms. He said that they have realised that they cannot celebrate this day as Mbarara without the president being the chief guest. That initially they had thought  of having other important Guests  like the Speaker of Parliament Anite Among but ideas kept coming that there should be an engagement of requesting the president to be part of this event as the  chief guest of honor  because he is a born of Mbarara and he is one of those who initiated ideas for creation of Mbarara town to a City status.
Abirebe adds that the other issue why they have been forced to postpone the Mbarara City Festival is the issue of Ebola outbreak in the country. That the situation is unpredictable. That anything can happen any time, that they also looked at that situation and felt that its not the right time perhaps to celebrate when actually the situation is unpredictable.
“Because of these two major factors, ladies and gentlemen, as Mbarara City we have been able to push  City Festival to a later date but ofcourse it will not go beyond March of next year. We want our dear President to be part and passel of those celebrations and that’s basically the reasons why we had to push this function. I must confess that there is time constraints, because initially we had invited the speaker of parliament to be our chief guest but after meeting and engaging with many other stakeholders then the idea of having the president as the chief guest came in. It was realized that as Mbarara we can’t celebrate without the president. Therefore the issue of time became crucial because you can’t engage the president within one month, it was not possible but we are continuing with the arrangements to have the festival and now we shall thoroughly plan to make it bigger” said Abirebe the Town Clerk.
According to the Town Clerk Abirebe,  he added that also resources had not been yet fully mobilized though they had already got some good money from the partners and other sponsors  who have offered.  He said that according to the magnitude of this festival, the planned expenditure was at 500M which is going to come from sponsors. Some of the sponsors include Uganda Breweries,  MTN, Lato Milk, Abahumuza and other organisations and companies.
According to the Chairperson of the organising committee of the Festival, Joseline Kiconco the Mbarara City Acting Commercial Officer added on the voice of her Boss the Town Clerk that one of the factors that caused the rescheduling of the city festival is Ebola outbreak. That when they sat as Mbarara City leadership they realised that Ebola outbreak had covered a big part of the country and they never wanted to risk the lives of the people. She said that as time goes the rescheduled date will be communicated later. Kiconco also added that they were also mobilizing the funds from the partners who were some of them not ready to raise because of financial constraints but some were ready to give contributions to support the event.

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