Former Buganda Kingdom Attorney General Apollo Nelson Makubuya is advocating for the renaming of streets in Kampala and other cities in different parts of the country. Makubuya wants streets with names of former colonial masters be renamed with Ugandan heroes.
Makubuya says in his online petition document that time has come for Uganda to come to terms with its history acknowledging the crimes committed by colonialists while celebrating the heroes and heroines who represent and promote the values of freedom, dignity, peace and justice.
The lawyer’s petition comes at a time when Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) is renaming the streets in Kampala city where only a few names of Ugandan heroes have been considered, leaving those of former colonial masters like Colville, Dewinton, William among others still standing.
“Names of colonial rulers and armies including Sir Henry Colville, Sir Fredrick Lugard, The Kings African Rifles, General Dewinton, and Col. Ternan who, as our history shows, were responsible for reprehensible crimes including pillage, rape and murder during the era of the British Empire in Uganda must be removed from our streets,” he said.
He added that currently there are many streets in Kampala, Jinja, Entebbe, Fort Portal and elsewhere which glorify these colonial rulers and help perpetuate a legacy of colonial conquest, occupation, subjugation and control.
“It is important to take these names off the pedestal they stand (they belong to museums of colonial history) and instead recognise other notable Ugandans or other personalities who are deserving of such esteem—based on a consultative process and recommendations of a respectable and representative body of eminent Ugandans,
“We believe that the removal of visible vestiges of a colonial hegemony from public spaces is a crucial part of a process of decolonisation and ending an era of domination and impunity. Events following the ugly killing of George Floyd in the USA demonstrate the urgency to address all forms of injustice and discrimination everywhere,” said Makubuya.
According to Makubuya, over 1700 people have signed the petition because it has helped to awaken consciousness about Uganda’s colonial history and a need to do something about reclaiming Uganda’s dignity, demand accountability and end colonial impunity.
“Uganda has many heroes who have worked for their country such as Dorcus Inzikuru, Stephen Kiprotich, Jimmy Kirunda, Gen Kasirye Gwanga, Gen Aronda Nyakairima and many others than naming our streets Colonial rulers who dehumanised us,” said Kawooya Mwebbe George also a senior citizen and former civil servant.
The petition needs over 2500 signatures remaining with over 800 to make the minimum required number.
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