Opinion
A museum, heritage and cultural site are different things
Publish Date: Feb 21, 2014
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By Fred Wangi

I acknowledge the move by Dr Ephraim Kamuhangire to join the church museum debate. (New Vision of February 18, 2014).

However, I would like to first correct one perspective that the learned heritage consultant seems to divert; the debate that I put across was entirely on the structure and not the site.

It is misleading to say that a museum and a heritage site are the same! At least it should not come from a line academician! In my submission I don’t talk about Namugongo the site.

I attach great value to that shrine; Am a proud parent who has successfully taught my children the importance of Namugongoto our faith and we are a family that will never miss June 3 fellowships at Namugongo.

In fact for your information Dr Kamuhangire; am one of the youths from Mukono Diocese who under the chairmanship of the now Mukono Bishop; Rt Rev Ssebaggala dug the terrasses that you sit on at Namugongo in the late 80s.(You sounded like an elder Anglican).

So Mr Consultant, if your arguement is that you want the musium to add value to Namugongo, like you rightly said you don’t want the designers to tamper with the pile of dummies, Mukajanga hut etc, your opinion is appreciated, but to say that we don’t know want a museum is because we want it housed on Church house is a miss representation of facts.

You must have travelled Dr and you must have realised that Museums the world over are located in cities including Uganda Museum by the way!

I look at the museum in a broad sense and not limited to Namugongo existing attractions like you seem to suggest but rather an institution that cares for (conserves) a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic cultural, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary.

Dr Kamuhangire, where is the linkage between my debate to put or not to put a Musium on Church house building , and your cry for heritage destruction that you see when you approach Mbarara!!!!.

My take on this is that you people in line of heritage haven’t done you part to disseminate information about heritage conservation and I am afraid you are to remain crying.

My last submission today is to educate the likes of Dr Kamuhangire that museums are places of convenience that’s why world over they are found in cities.

And my idea to locate a church museum on Church house is based on the history of the yet to be completed Church house.

Our question should be; Does the comparative advantage to put a museum at Namugongo justify the sh13b to construct it?

The writer is an engineer

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