Since Ekisaakaate kya Nnabagareka (EKN) was launched in Uganda 13 years ago it has accelerated change, transformation and impact in the future of the world. We celebrated its thirteenth birthday in South London launched by none other than Her Royal Highness Sylvia Nagginda the Nnabagereka of Buganda on 28th May 2019. The 4-day programme commenced on Saturday 25th May 2019 at St Jude & St Aidan’s Church, Thornton Heath.
The convening commenced with more than 115 children and youth, from one end of the floor to the other, bringing together the growing network of EKN comprising of the younger generation that were going to be with us for the 4-day summit. The programme was intended for children and youth between the ages of five to thirty. There were, however, four participants in their early thirties (31 and 34 years old) who had knowledge and feeling to attend, and they all attested to benefiting from the summit.
Inside, thirty volunteers from the United Kingdom were supported by three Ugandan trainers from Nnabagereka Development Foundation. Professor Sam and Mrs Christine Luboga also from Uganda as well and Dinnah Senkungu Walusimbi who travelled all the way from the USA to offer her services.
Topics covered ranged from basic Luganda language, handcraft making, the importance of good behaviour, preparing Kiganda food, financial intelligence and then we directed our attention to knife crime (a pressing problem in the UK at the moment).
In his speech at the closing ceremony, Kabaka’s representative in UK & Ireland – Oweekitiibwa Ronald Lutaaya expressed gratitude to the Nnabagereka for Ekisaakaate concept, the organiser of EKN South London and the parents who brought their children to attend. Owek. Lutaaya cautioned the parents that the only way their children will retain what they learnt in Ekisaakaate is if the parents are inclined to carry on teaching these values in their homes.
“Culture enables us to understand our history better, it gives connection to social values, allows community integration, promotes tolerance with others and it gives us a sense of belonging and a purpose in life’.”
Nnabagereka Sylvia Nnaginda
The closing ceremony was also attended by several Kabaka’s Bakungu in the UK, religious leader, members of Buganda royal family resident in the UK, the chair of Minority Ethnic Anglican Concerns and community leaders.
In her closing remarks, Nnabagereka Sylvia Nagginda brought greetings from Ssaabasajja Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II. She thanked the Organising Committee of EKN, South London led by Richard Ntege, Abagunjuzi (trainers), Abasaakaate (Participants) and most importantly the parents who trusted the organisers with their children. Nnabagereka was very impressed by the Basaakaate and thought their performance on the day to demonstrate some of what they learnt in Ekisaakaate was beyond praise. She thanked Ganda Boys for their performance as well, which she so admired.
On the closing day, Nnabagereka held a session with the parents: here she explained how parents are a very important part of EKN programme, her highness felt it was generally desirable for parents to give their children a good foundation. It was for this reason that she cautioned them to instruct their children, especially in the diaspora.
Some of the Ekisaakaate Kya Nnabagereka London participants during the launch.
Nnabagereka said that the ethos of Ekisaakaate is ‘Obuntubulamu’ which can be loosely translated as Civility or Humanness. That it embraces the spirit of civility, kindness, compassion, dignity, respect for self and others and the recognition that no man is an island and therefore there is a need to strive for collaboration with others.
She illustrated how Ekisaakaate combines traditional and modern values to promote morals. HRH stressed the importance of the cultural maxim: ‘culture enables us to understand our history better, it gives connection to social values, allows community integration, promotes tolerance with others and it gives us a sense of belonging and a purpose in life’.
Nnabagereka informed us that NDF tried to launch a London-wide programme but subsequently recognised that first, London is too big and secondly it’s impossible or nearly so, for everyone to travel from the different parts of London to one venue. The intention is to, therefore, hold EKN programmes in South, West, North and East London but for this to happen, those communities have to organise themselves and then correspond with NDF to form a relationship that will take the project forward, this is what South London has done.
EKN South London was closed with a commemorative dinner.
Nnabagereka will be launching EKN in Manchester this weekend 1st June 2019.