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Govt promises to complete martyrs' shrine renovation

By Pascal Kwesiga

Added 15th December 2015 12:14 PM

The two shrines were spruced up by Government and the Church ahead of Pope Francis's visit to Uganda. The roads to the two sites were also paved.

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Archbishop of Kampala Archdiocese Cyprian Lwanga (left) welcomed by Prime Minister Rukakana Rugunda (right) Centre is the ex-Archbishop of the COU Mpalanyi Nkoyoyo at the Prime Minister’s office. PHOTO: Wilfred Sanya


The Government has pledged to continue working with the Catholic Church to complete the renovation works on the martyrs' shrines in Namugongo and Munyonyo and market to the world the two historic sites as international tourist destinations.

The two shrines were spruced up by Government and the Church ahead of Pope Francis's visit to Uganda. The roads to the two sites were also paved. 

The Pontiff was in the country between November 27 and 29 when he proceeded to Central African Republic on the last leg of his African tour.

On his way back to the Holy See on November 30, Pope Francis told journalists that his African trip was full of surprises, adding that Kenya, which he visited before coming to Kampala is a more developed nation while Uganda is unique because of its identity with martyrs. 

In Central African Republic, the pontiff said he saw desire for peace, forgiveness and reconciliation in a country torn apart by a civil war that sometimes takes religious dimensions. 

The Pope was invited to Uganda to preside over belatedly the Golden Jubilee anniversary of the canonization of the 22 Catholic martyrs canonized in 1964. They were killed along with 23 Anglican Church martyrs on orders from Kabaka Mwanga for refusing to denounce their faith between 1885 and 1887. 

Prime minister, Ruhakana Rugunda, the Catholic archbishop for Kampala, Cyprian and the Anglican Church archbishop, Stanley Ntagali, on Monday issued a joint statement in which they described the papal visit as a success.

In a statement which was signed by Rugunda, Lwanga and Ntagali, the government committed itself to continue working with the church to complete the unfinished rehabilitation and upgrading works on the shrines.

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