Namutumba traditional leaders want cultural music played at parties

Namutumba traditional leaders want cultural music played at parties
Namutumba traditional leaders want cultural music played at parties

Africa-Press – Uganda. Traditional leaders in Namutumba District, effective March this year, want couples and their guests to be entertained by cultural dances, not Western or Country music.

The Busiki chiefdom minister of culture, Mr Wilberforce Isiko, said that much as the drums cannot provide the kind of entertainment guests may enjoy, they are also a tool for communication.

“Starting next month (March), all marriages in the district will be characterised by cultural dances, a symbol showing Busoga’s culture,” Mr Isiko Saturday.

He added: “We are not banning discos, but for the time being, they should be used for graduation and other parties.”

According to Mr Isiko, in the Ugandan cultural setting, drums are used to convene meetings, alert the community when someone has died by suicide, or by a family to celebrate the birth of twins.

“The drum is at the centre of entertainment and cuts across all ethnic groups in Uganda; so, we want our culture back for the young people to know and see how marriage is celebrated traditionally,” he further explained.

The first deputy Prime Minister of Busiki chiefdom, Mulondo Kagoye Isabirye, who is from the Baise Mulondo clan and a resident of Kigalama village in Namutumba sub-county, said he is “tired” of listening to Western and Country music.

“There is ‘You’re Still the One’ by Shania Twain, ‘You are the Reason’ by Olivia Penalva and many others being played at marriages. These have eroded the traditional way of celebrating traditional marriages,” Mr Isabirye said.

He added: “When a girl is getting married, we play the drums as a sign of contacting special spirits for blessings and protection. The way people dance to Western music, including “squeeze”, sends a bad signal to young people who attend such parties.”

He fronted traditional Lusoga songs such as Tamene Ibuga and Mama Ayaba as “the best music” to be played during marriages.

The state minister for culture in Busiki chiefdom, Mr Wilber Gonda, said the majority of Ugandans live in rural areas and a few, who are buying expensive music accessories which play African music, are only found in urban areas.

The Katuukiro of Nkono chiefdom, Mr Eridadi Kabakubya, said the advancement in technology should not kill the traditional dances because drums set the pace and rhythm for the different kinds of dances used to celebrate marriages.

Residents speak out

Mr Wilson Kalikawe, a resident of Bulafa village, said Busoga traditional marriages were eroded by the introduction of formal education and copying of Western culture.

“We need to go back to how marriage parties were handled, where the issue of bringing discos was not there; instead, people have copied it and it is now normal,” he further explained.

Ms Sarah Nangobi, a resident of Namutumba town council, said banning Western and Country music at marriage parties will not help because such music is needed.

“Such music has no problem, but the way people dance to it is. Let us first regulate the way people dance to it before we ban it,” she said.

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