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Nsambu has a warped mind about Banyarwanda!

By Vision Reporter

Added 19th October 2001 03:00 AM

SIR—I wish to respond to the article “Banyarwanda not indigenous’ in The New Vision of October 6. Mr Nsubuga Nsambu argues that since he “never heard” of a place in Uganda that is home to Banyarwanda,

SIR—I wish to respond to the article “Banyarwanda not indigenous’ in The New Vision of October 6. Mr Nsubuga Nsambu argues that since he “never heard” of a place in Uganda that is home to Banyarwanda,

SIR—I wish to respond to the article “Banyarwanda not indigenous’ in The New Vision of October 6. Mr Nsubuga Nsambu argues that since he “never heard” of a place in Uganda that is home to Banyarwanda, they cannot be indigenous! The man’s logic is warped: We are not responsible for his limited knowledge of history and geography. As there are more than one ethnic group in Tororo and Teso, so it is with Ankole and Kigezi, where indigenous Banyarwanda of Uganda originate - at the Uganda/Rwanda border. But for the oft virulent attacks unleashed against Banyarwanda by Mr Nsambu and the likes, with the aim of eroding their rights and legitimacy in the public perception, I would not have responded to claims against reason. All across Africa, the arbitrary colonial borders left many ethnic communities fragmented into two or more nationalities: the Kenyan Somali; and the Tswana and Sotho of South Africa, etc. Along Uganda’s borders we have the Iteso, the Sabiny and the Basamia, also found in Kenya; the Acholi, Lugbara and the Kakwa in Sudan; the Batuku, Alur and Lugbar in the Congo; Bakiga and Banyankore in Rwanda. Similarly, my family and many other Banyarwanda along the Uganda/Rwanda border were settled in what was later to become Uganda. And so Ugandans we are, love it or hate it. And no thanks to Nsambu’s or any other person’s largesse. My grandfather, Azariya Kanyamibwa (1878-1985) was among the local people who assisted in the demarcation of the Rwanda/Uganda border. He acted as translator for the Bazungu (from Swahili to Runyankore/Rukiga and Runyarwanda), and was appointed chief. As to Nsambu’s quest for the home of Banyarwanda in Uganda, I gladly invite him to visit the border areas. Visit my home area, Rushenyi, Ntungamo district. Go to Ngoma and Rubaare subcounties, visit Nyakariro or Mukoni, etc. the common language is Runyarwanda. In fact, during the 1962 general elections, the UPC fielded a Munyarwanda, Enock Kareba Sebagaramba, to win the Banyarwanda vote away from the DP. The trick failed. The population make-up in Ntungamo is mostly Banyankore/Bahororo and Banyarwanda. In Kabale, one finds both Bakiga and Banyarwanda. Of course, one recalls that Kisoro district was part of Rwanda, until early last century when it was given to the King of England as “a birthday” present by his Belgian counterpart! Nsambu’s suggestion that Banyarwanda be classified as Hutu or Tutsi, is most outrageous, considering the role such classification played during the Rwanda genocide! It probably gives away Nsambu’s hidden motive regarding Banyarwanda. Else, why would he fight to divide a community working at unity? Of course if he is a Munyarwanda himself, he would have every right to ask to be called a Tutsi or whatever else he chose. As I am not sure of Nsambu’s own nativity or parentage, I leave it to him to clarify. Capt Gad Gasaatura Rushenyi County

Nsambu has a warped mind about Banyarwanda!

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