Bundibugyo town was a scene of joy and excitement on Friday as a new cultural leader was installed.
Retired Major Martin Kamya was installed the cultural leader of the Obudingiya Bwa Bwamba (OBB) cultural institution. The function took place at his palace in Nkisya village in Mirimbi Sub County.
Kamya was installed by 25 clan leaders of the Bamba, Babwisi and Bavanuma, the three ethnic groups in Bundibugyo district.
In a three minute cultural ceremony attended by President Museveni, Kamya was given a spear by three elders representing the ethnic groups. The spear which was wrapped in a skin of a leopard will be used by the cultural leader to defend the institution.
Dressed in a brown silver gown, Kamya then walked around the palace raising the spear, amidst cheers from his subjects who included OBB cabinet ministers.
President Museveni said that he had no problem granting the people of Bundibugyo, their wish to have a cultural leader. Museveni said that Kamya should use his position to unite the Bakonzo and Bamba.
Museveni also said that he plans to call a meeting between the King of Tooro, Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV, Rwenzururu King, Charles Wesley Mumbere and Kamya, to discuss how to avoid ethnic conflicts in the Rwenzori region.
Later in the day, Kamya was presented to thousands of his subjects at the Boma grounds, where his father, the late Yeremiya Kawamara, one of the founders of the Rwenzururu movement was buried. School children, religious leaders and the elderly danced after he was presented.
The installation of Kamya follows two years of preparations which included the endorsement of the institution by Bundibugyo district council, the drafting of the OBB constitution, anthem and emblem.
His coronation has in the past been postponed three times due to the delay by the army to retire him and financial constraints.
Last month Bamba elders under their umbrella organisation, Bundibugyo Elders Development Association (BEDA) issued an ultimatum to the government to recognize OBB or they would forcefully install their cultural leader. Kamya has served in the army since 1992 and has been an intelligence officer. He was retired from the army last week and allowed to serve as the cultural leader of OBB.