When it comes to history, Uganda has rich history that is worth discovering while on a Uganda safari. Events come and go, but the history remains and is always passed to the next generations through literature or physical structures such as Monuments. Kampala has several monuments that you can’t afford to miss. These monuments include;
The Independence Monument
The Independence Monument is found along Speke Road next to the Wall fence of Sheraton Hotel. Uganda became a British Colony in the 1890s until she gained Independence in 9th October 1962. Captain Frederick Lugard, the officer of the Imperial British East African Company (IBEAC), raised the British Flag/Union Jack at a Fort he had built on old Kampala Hill, thus declaring Uganda a British Colony/Protectorate. This meant that from that time Uganda and the resources belonged to the British government rendering the locals poor with nothing or little left and completely had no opinion on how the country was run. The year 1962 was the best year in Uganda’s history and was welcomed with excitement. Songs of victory and jubilation were sung throughout the country. This Independence Monument was built by Mr. Gregory Maloba to show the Independent Uganda. This Monument was put up a few months before the 9th of October 1962 and is printed at the back of Uganda’s Currency Notes.
This monument is not just some towering structure but has a lot of symbols with significant meanings. For instance, the structure is inform of a woman standing on the ground with her baby lifted high, a loosened rope around her and she looks at a small boy in her hand who also lifts his hands in a victorious manner. The woman standing on the ground signifies the strong foundation that Uganda as a country is based on and the loosened rope around the woman signifies the freedom from colonialism and bondage by the British.
World War Memorial Monument
This Monument is also printed on one of Uganda’s Currency Notes (the 5ooo Uganda Shillings Note), and honors the memories of those individuals that lost their lives in the World War II. So far, the World War Memorial Monument is the oldest Monument in Kampala and was put up by the British Colonial government in 1945. This Monument specifically celebrates the Ugandans who lost their lives while supporting the British soldiers during the first and second World wars.
Sir Edward Mutesa I Monument
The Sir Samuel Mutesa I Monument is found at around Speke Road and Nile Avenue Junction next to the Independence Monument. Sir Edward Frederick Mutesa II was born on the 19th November 1924, was crowned the Kabaka (King) of Buganda Kingdom on the 22nd November 1939 and died in exile on the 21st November 1969. He was the 35th King of Buganda and interestingly the first President of Uganda. This Monument was established to honor Sir Edward Mutesa II as the first President of Uganda and as the 35th Kabaka of Buganda-cthe biggest Kingdom in Uganda for his tireless efforts towards the fight for Uganda’s Independence. The most interesting thing about Kabaka Edward Mutesa I is that, he was the only man and probably will be the only one for forever in Uganda to hold both titles of a King and President. This Monument was unveiled by the current King – Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi in 2007.
The Stride Monument-also the CHOGM Monument
The stride monument is found at the center of the Parliamentary gardens and Kampala Serena Hotel, and was established to honor the Common Wealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in 2007. This monument was opened by the Queen of England-Queen Elizabeth II and it is considered the most costly monument in Uganda because it was built at over Shs 150,000,000 (One hundred and fifty million shillings). It was built by a team of 11 professional sculptors under the supervision of Prof. George Kyeyune. This Aluminum assemblage depicts a family of husband, wife and son moving forward, implying the Common wealth countries are progressing or developing together as a family.
The Statue of Leadership
This Monument is located in front of the Amber House on Kampala Road and honors the introduction of electricity in Kampala and Uganda. This structure features Sir Apollo Kaggwa-the former Prime Minister of Buganda Kingdom from 1890 to 1926. Sir Apollo Kaggwa is honored for having advocated for the extension of Hydro electricity and Purified water to Buganda Kingdom regardless of the criticisms from the local Baganda who perceived it as wastage of time on unnecessary things instead of advocating and asking for guns and gold which they presumed to be more important.
Other important monuments in Kampala include the Education Monuments in institutions such as the monument of three children struggling to touch a book found in Kyambogo University was unveiled in 1996 and several monuments in Makerere University but the most interesting one being in front of College of Natural sciences that shows a hen with chicks hatching from eggs, depicting the new dawn in Ugandan education. The other important monument is the Centenary Monument among others.