By Jeff Andrew Lule
The Katikiro of Buganda, Eng J.B. Walusimbi has launched a fundraising campaign to raise money and material for the reconstruction of Bulange Plaza situated at Bulange, the kingdom’s administrative centre in Mengo.
Bulange Plaza was constructed by the former President of Uganda Gen. Idi Amin in 1975 as part of the defense offices but he was ousted before its completion.
While launching the campaign in the Buganda Lukiiko [its Parliament] at Bulange, the Eng. Walusimbi said they needed cement, iron bars and other building materials to start the work.
He managed to raise 850 bags of cement from the Lukiiko members in cash and in pledges.
Walusimbi also unveiled the architectural plan and artistic impression on completion of building to the Lukiiko members, saying that it was only awaiting approval from Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA).
The artistic impression of the finished Bulange Plaza.
“Our planners have already approved it and we are now waiting for KCCA to look through it and advise,” he said.
The move follows Kabaka Muwenda Mutebi’s call in his end-of-year message for the kingdom to embark on the completion of the building among other projects.
The three-storied building, Walusimbi said, will be commercialized.
“It is going to be an independent commercial building. We are going to have a perimeter wall separating it from Bulange with an independent gate to its premises.”
The project, whose completion will be by this year’s end or at the beginning of 2014, is aimed at widening the Kingdom’s income base.
Bulange Plaza has stood the test of time, and is moving towards achieving a better, new and more modern look.
Following the completion of Muganzirwazza building in Katwe, the kingdom is setting its sights on Bulange Plaza, then Kasubi and Wamala tombs.
The Wamala tombs project was delayed due to lack of local materials like grass and rids that are needed for roofing.
“We are likely to face the same challenge on Kasubi [tombs]. We need money to buy that grass because it is now scarce in Buganda. We call on the clan heads and county chiefs to mobilize their people to bring the items,” Walusimbi urged.
On the Kasubi tombs, he said they have already signed the papers with the contractor to kick off the reconstruction.
He said they have also beefed up security at Mujaguzo Palace in Kabowa following attempts by unknown individuals to burn it.
“We wrote to the Inspector General of Police, to give us more policemen, which he did. Now the palace, together with Bulange premises are manned by the tourism police plus our usual guards,” he said.
The kingdom plans to enforce the teaching of Luganda language to promote culture and morals among its people [Baganda]. It also recognized Government’s decision to retain the teaching of local languages in schools.