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About Busoga

Busoga a traditional Bantu kingdom in Eastern Uganda. We are cultural institution that promotes popular participation and unity among the people of Busoga, through cultural and developmental programs for the improved livelihood of the people of Busoga. We strive for a united people of Busoga, who enjoy economic, social and cultural prosperity. We also continue to enhance, revamp and pave the way for an efficient institutional and management system for the Kyabazinga kingship.

Busoga comprises of 11 principalities of the Basoga people. Our kingdom’s capital is located in Bugembe, which is in Jinja District, the second largest city in Uganda. Busoga Kingdom is composed of ten politically organised districts: Jinja, Buyende, Kamuli, Kaliro, Iganga, Mayuge, Luuka, Namutumba, Bugiri and Namayingo. Each district is headed by democratically elected chairpersons or Local Council Five, while municipalities are headed by an elected Mayor. Jinja is the industrial and economical hub of Busoga. The Busoga area is bounded on the north by the swampy Lake Kyoga which separates it from Lango, on the west by the Victoria Nile which separates it from Buganda, on the south by Lake Victoria which separates it from Tanzania and Kenya, and on the east by the Mpologoma River, which separates it from various smaller tribal groups (Padhola, Bugwere, Bugisu, etc.). Busoga also includes some islands in Lake Victoria, such as Samuka, Ndaiga and Lwabitooke.

Busoga’s Past and Present

Being one of the most ancient kingdoms in Uganda, Busoga Kingdom has a political, social and economic organization similar to that of other interacastrian kingdoms.

It is made up of ten politically organized districts that include, Buyende, Kamuli, Kaliro, Jinja, Iganga, Mayuge, Namutumba, Bugiiri, Namayingo and Luuka.

Origin: The History andFormation

In the turn of the 16th century, an important event took place, which was to give the Basoga their peculiar cultural configuration. This was the advent of the Baisengobi clan, who bear their historical descendancy from Bunyoro.

Prince MukamaNamutukula from the royal family (Babiito) of Bunyoro is said to have left Bunyoro around the 16th century and as part of Bunyoro’s expansionist policy, he trekked eastwards across Lake Kyoga with his wife Nawudo, a handful of servants, arms and a dog, and landed at Iyingo, located at the northern point of Busoga in the present day Buyende District.

Prince Mukama and wife Nawudo bore several children of whom only five boys survived. On his departure back to Bunyoro, Prince Mukama allocated them areas within his influence as overseers. In this way, the first-born Wakoli was given to oversee the area called Bukooli, Zibondo was to administer Bulamogi, Ngobi was given Kigulu, Tabingwa was to oversee Luuka, while the youngest son Kitimbo was to settle in Bugabula.

These loosely allotted areas of supervision to the Prince’s sons were later to become major administrative and centers of cultural authority in Busoga. This state of affairs in Busoga’s political and cultural arrangement continued till the late 19th century when the colonialists persuaded the rulers of Busoga into some form of federation. This federation resulted into a regional Busoga council called Busoga Lukiiko which has presently been sitting at Bugembe.

However, before 1906, although it was often called a Kingdom, it was debatable whether Busoga could really be classified as such. Unlike its neighbor, Buganda, Busoga did not have a central all-powerful figurehead (King or Queen) until 1906, at the behest of the British colonial powers.

During that time, the white colonial rulers were grooming Chief YosiaNadiope, the Gabula of Bugabula to become the first permanent resident ruler of the formed Busoga federation. Nadiope had been one of the first Basoga students to study at Kings College Budo in 1906.

However, catastrophe struck Busoga in 1913, when Nadiope died of malaria. The following year 1914, Chief Ezekiel Tenywa Wako, the Zibondo of Bulamogi was completing his studies at Kings College Budo. With the support of the British coupled with his background as a Prince, Zibondo of Bulamogi, with his good educational background, was a suitable candidate for the top post.

In 1919, the hereditary saza chiefs of Busoga resolved in the Lukiiko to elect Ezekiel Tenywa Wako as president of Busoga.

In due course, of the year 1918-9, the title of Isebantu Kyabazinga was created and one of the chiefs, Wako took the throne. In 1925, Ezekiel Tenywa Wako, the Kyabazinga of Busoga became a member of Uganda Kings Council, consisting of the Kyabazinga of Busoga, Kabaka of Buganda, the Omukama of Bunyoro, Omukama of Tooro and Mugabe of Ankole.?

On 11 February 1939, Owekitibwa Ezekiel Tenywa Wako (late father of the last Isebantu Kyabazinga wa Busoga, HRH Henry Wako Muloki), the Zibondo of Bulamogi was installed as the first Isebantu Kyabazinga wa Busoga which title he continued to hold until 1949 when he retired due to old age. By the time Owekitibwa E.T. Wako retired as the Isebantu Kyabazinga wa Busoga, the Busoga Lukiiko had expanded to include people other than the hereditary Rulers. These members of the Busoga Lukiiko were elected representatives two from each of the then 55 Sub-counties in Busoga.

When Owekitibwa E.T. Wako retired, it was necessary to replace him. The Busoga Lukiiko resolved then that the Isebantu Kyabazinga wa Busoga shall always be elected among the five lineages of BaiseNgobi (Ababiito) hereditary rulers traditionally believed to have been the five sons of Omukama of Bunyoro who immigrated to Busoga from Bunyoro, namely:

Zibondo of Bulamogi, Gabula of Bugabula, Ngobi of Kigulu, Tabingwa of Luuka, Nkono of Bukono.

This method of election was used for the subsequent elections of the Isebantu Kyabazinga wa Busoga, beginning 1949 when Owekitibwa Chief William Wilberforce NadiopeKadhumbula of Bugabula was elected IsebantuKyabazinga wa Busoga for two terms of three years each, followed by Owekitibwa Henry Wako Muloki who also served two terms.

In 1966, the Kyabazinga was dethroned. However in 1995, the government restored monarchies in Uganda with the promulgation of the new constitution of the Republic of Uganda; Article 246(1). On February 11, 1996, His Royal Highness Henry Wako Muloki was reinstated as Kyabazinga Isebantu of Busoga.

Since his re-installation on 11 February 1996, the Kyabazinga worked tirelessly for the good and unification of Busoga. And among his achievements include special programmes initiated for girl-child education, for the youth and for the elderly and the disadvantaged.

He was a strong pillar to us not until, Monday, 1 September 2008, when he finally succumbed to esophageal cancer at the Mulago National Referral Hospital at the age of 87.


List of Busoga Chieftaincies and Current Officeholders
Rank Chieftaincy Title of Chieftain Name of Current Chief
1 Bugabula The Gabula of Bugabula Waira Kitimbo
2 Bugweri The Menha of Bugweri Nkuutu Samuel Menha Zirabamuzale
3 Bukholi The Wakholi of Bukholi Isabirye Joseph Mwonda
4 Bukono The Nkono of Bukono Mutyaba Godfrey Nkono
5 Bulamogi The Zibondo of Bulamogi Waako Columbus Wambuzi
6 Bunhole The Nanhumba of Bunhole Nanhumba Muzamiru Bukumunhe
7 Bunya The Luba of Bunya Luba Mukajanga Geoffrey
8 Busiki The Kisiki of Busiki Nabongho Yorolimu
9 Butembe The Ntembe of Butembe Fredrick Mesach Walugembe
10 Kigulu The Ngobi of Kigulu Patrick Gologolo Ngobi
11 Luuka The Tabingwa of Luuka Wellington Nabwana Tabingwa

The Katukiro (Prime Minister) of Busoga Kingdom is Hon. Joseph Muvawala. The office of the Katukiro in the Kingdom is an important and a vital one. The Katukiro is the head of the Kingdom’s Government and official spokesperson for the Kyabazinga and the Kingdom.

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