The Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, Stephen Kaziimba Mugalu has called for declaration of the Bishop Hannington Day as a public holiday.
Kazimba made this call at the celebration of the Bishop Hannington Day in Kyando, Mayuge district on Thursday, 29 October 2020. The day is marked to commemorate the martyrdom of Bishop Hannington in 1885.
Kaziimba said efforts by Speaker Rebecca Kadaga to have the day declared a public holiday and celebrated like the Uganda Martyr’s Day cannot go unnoticed.
“When the President came here, he said that this day should be announced as a public holiday but I don’t know the reasons for delay. I therefore, ask that the campaign that Kadaga started to have this day celebrated as much as the Namugongo Martyrs day is strengthened,” said Kazimba.
Kaziimba said that Church of Uganda foresees Kyando grow into a religious tourism site with added spiritual benefits.
“In the spirit of promoting religious tourism, I ask that the road that leads to this site is tarmacked. We cannot have a bad road leading to the place of martyrdom when roads that lead to bars are tarmacked,” Kaziimba added.
The Bishop of Busoga Diocese, Moses Naimanhye expressed displeasure with the continued absence of other political leaders from the region.
“It is our concern that on this day, it is always the Speaker, who despite her busy office, travels from Kampala to celebrate the day. We don’t know what happened to other leaders even when we took the initiative of writing to each one,” he said.
Speaker Kadaga asked the Vice President, Hon Edward Ssekandi to remind the President of an earlier pledge of US$5 million meant for construction of Bishop Hannington Memorial Centre.
“The former Archbishop Stanley Ntagali wrote to the President requesting for funding for constructiion of a memorial site and training facilities in honour of Bishop Hannington. The President told us that the money we asked for was even too little; so kindly ask him to give us that little money,” said Kadaga.
Kadaga said the desired Bishop Hannington memorial site which currently has no facility must be a responsibility of government and pledged to see to it that the 2021/2022 budget caters for it.
“I want to inform you that we have honoured a pledge made on 3rd June in Namugongo and have allocated shs1 billion towards construction of a museum at the Namugongo Anglican Shrine. In the next financial year’s budget, I will see to it that this site is also included,” Kadaga added.