Friday, September 29, 2017


The Chairperson of the Prime Ministerial Commission Mr. Gadi Mbayahi admitted that there was need for the Bakonzo and Bwamba to dialogue in order to restore peace in the Rwenzori region since the two were the primary actors in the violent conflicts that broke out since 2014. " I admit and suggest the two Prime Ministers from Obusinga and Obudhingiya need to meet and dialogue since the two tribes of Bakonzo and Bwamba are the primary actors in these conflicts" Mr. Gadi was giving a comment at the Rwenzori region leaders and elders dialogue meeting held at Lisieux Guest Centre, Fort Portal on 28th September, 2017.
Hon. Gadi Mbayahi ( standing), chairperson of the OBR Prime Ministerial Commission
Hon. Loice Biira Bwambale, emphasizing a point of peaceful coexistence during her presentation at the regional leaders dialogue at Lisieux Guest Centre, Fort Portal on 28th Sept. 2017 
Hon. Loice Biira Bwambale ( former district woman MP of Kasese district from the 1989 NRC to the 7th Parliament of Uganda and CA delegate). Hon. Loice presented on a topic of the role of cultural institutions in peace building in the Rwenzori Region. She outline five key intervention areas of cultural institutions as provided in the Constitution and other legal instruments made by parliament.
Col. Peter Omola, Bridged Commander, Mountain bridged ( in army uniform) presenting at the leaders dialogue at Lisieux Guest Centre, Fort Portal, 28th Sept. 2017 
Col. Peter Omola presented a paper on the current conflict status/focus and highlights from the security perspectives. The man in uniform noted that winning a war needed community support by providing credible and timely information, he also noted the cooperation sofar with the local leaders in the Rwenzori region. He assured the elders and leaders that, with UPDF, they were protected and expected no more attacks given the establishment of a specialised bridged in mountain war affairs.
While the UPDF 2nd Division Public relations Officer, Maj. Peter Mugisa, reiterated the words of Col. Peter of the UPDF by building the civilian military cooperation ( CIMIC) by participating in community actions like cleaning of towns, health centers and providing medical support, attending sensitization meetings.
RDC- Mr. Asimwe receiving the Foot Peace Ambassadors tool box from the Chairperson RWECO, Rev. Isaiah
The participants were drawn from the districts of Kasese, Kamwenge, Ntoroko and Bundibugyo. Other participants were the elders and cultural institutions and religious leaders representatives from the region.
Rev. Yongeza Mukonzo ( standing in a color) presenting during the leaders dialogue.
Ms. Florence Kintu, Chairperson Rwenzori Women's Forum on Peace ( standing) commenting on  the presentation of Hon. Loice
The leaders dialogue meeting was held under the theme: together for peace and was a break through after the team from Obusinga led by the Hon. Gadi suggested to dialogue with Obudhingiya. RWECO will follow up on that action.

Compiled by

Jimmy B. O


The world celebrated the International Day of on Thursday 21st, September 2017 under the Theme: Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity for All.  The Rwenzori Regional Day of Peace Celebrations were held on Tuesday 26th Sept. 2017 at Bwesumbu SDA Primary School, Kasese District under the same theme. At the event, the participants  appreciated the cultural diversity that we cherish in the region as different cultural groups presented. Rwenzori region which is on the road to peace building is slowly recovering from the violent conflicts and its believed that through music dance and drama, dialogue and reconciliation and forgiveness, peace will return to the once tourism region. The region lost lives, property and jobs as well as economic activities including tourism  at the height of the violent conflicts from 2014-2016.

 Leaders of cultural groups from the Rwenzori region during the International Day of Peace Celebrations at Bwesumbu SDA, Kasese District.  The cultural groups were drawn from: Bandimagwara Cultural Group from Bundibugyo district,  Basongara Cultural Band, Eco's Band and Nyabingo Cultural Entertainers Group all presented. Bweramuli Youth Group from Ntoroko also presented a skit on human rights promotion.
Bweramuli Youth Drama Club, Ntoroko District, presenting at the International Day of Peace at Bwesumbu SDA, 26th Sept. 2017
From left: Mr. Baker (Bwamba Babwisi), Mr. Kalenzi ( Basongora), Mr. Jolly Kahyana ( Bakonzo) and one of the group members

Bandimagwara Cultural Group from Bundibugyo district, presenting at Bwesumbu SDA on 26th Sept. 2017

Nyakabingo Bakonzo Cultural Group presenting Flute dance, one of the Bakonzo instruments showing sign of peace

From left: the District Woman Councilor and Mr. Wilson Mbathulhowo, District Councilor, representing the district Chairperson at the regional international day of peace on 26th, Sept. 2017

Key messages at the regional international day of peace on 26th Sept. 2017 at Bwesumbu SDA, Kasese district:

Message from the Chief Guest was presented by Hon. Wilson Mbathulhawo, who acknowledged the need for peace and peaceful coexistence in the region. He noted the contributions by the different arms of government, CSOs and the community for participating in the International day of peace events. He further noted that, Kasese district had gone through many years of violent conflicts and it was time for politicians and community to come to terms and talk peace to forge development in the region.

The LCIII Chairperson, Mr. Samson Bagenda, called on the community to cooperate with the security personal in case of arrest  "dont resist arrest, inform your wife to inform the LCI, and after reaching sub county, inform your district councilor and me"

While the speaker of the Esyomango Mr. Jolly Kahyana challenged the community as he paraded the different leaders of the cultural groups present at the function. Jolly noted that there were bad elements from the elders who were misleading the youth, and he gave out his phone contact just in case any one comes in the name of the Obusinga pretending to be helping and registering the youth to join Police to first confirm the information from the LCIII and his office.

The CSOs present were:  RWECO, GHFRD, RICENT, RIDE AFRICA, KRC, RFPJ, EDEN, Media houses.

Compiled by

Jimmy BO

Monday, September 25, 2017


Learning from the ancestors is one thing that we downplay but the Acholi sub region found in the Northern Part of Uganda, took advantage of the Acholi tradition of making peace under one of the oldest trees "Oput". The tradition dates back to medieval age but that did not stop the modern Acholi elders from performing rituals that would enable the community heal from the wounds of violent conflicts. We call the ritual "Muto Oput"  reconciliation under the tree (oput) done to families or communities that were involved in violent conflict leading to loss of lives.
Parabongo Survivors performing the"Muto Oput" 13th Sept. 2017 at Parabongo Primary School, Amuru District
RWECO led a team of 62 foot peace ambassadors for a learning visit to Acholi sub region in Northern Uganda. The RWECO team  was hosted by ACORD and JRP in Gulu from 11-14th, Sept. 2017. The main purpose of the learning visit to appreciate the approaches of conflict management used by the communities in the Acholi sub region that was faced with violent conflicts for 25 years. From the learning visit, the team appreciated the triangulation of approaches in peace building and the involvement of religious leaders, cultural leaders and the political leaders to end the northern Uganda insurgence.
Bishop Ochola ( middle in colar), Secretary of the Acholi Religious Leaders Peace Initiative ( ARLPI) with RWECO team at JRP, 12th Sept. 2017 
Stop violence- Bishop Ochola tells the RWECO team at JRP-Office Board room-12th Sept, 2017
" We formed Peace Committees in every sub county in the Acholi sub region, as a mechanism to sensitize the members of the community to regard the formally abducted children as victims of circumstance"

RWECO team participating in a dance with the Women Network group in Gulu Municipality, 13th-Sept. 2017
Experience sharing was one way of recovering from the trauma caused by the life in captivity
Mr. Simon Peter, vice chairperson Gulu District, giving presentation on the role of political leaders in the pacification of Acholi sub region- 12th-Sept. 2017
"We have putt a side the political parties and focused on developed, the Hon. Mama Santa is the secretary for social services, President assistant but she is  member of the executive where the district chairperson is FDC" here we talk of development and dialogue.

A jovial welcome at Parabongo Primary School, Amuru district- 13th-Sept. 2017
Participants getting ready for the field day in Gulu- 12th-Sept. 2017
Group photo after pre-visit meeting at ACORD Office, 28th-August, 2017
Lessons from the learning visit to Gulu

1. The  four pillars of peace:  Truth, Mercy, Peace and Justice
2. Local community support to peace building was vital for ending the violence in the Acholi sub region
3. Respect and tolerance for each other, approach by the Acholi Religious leaders peace Initiative used as a tool to accommodate each despite of the religious beliefs
4. Use of different approaches by cultural leaders, religious leaders and the political support
5. The government of Uganda and the international community  role in ending the insurgence

Main challenge:

1. Accepting the survivors and their children born in captivity
2. Livelihoods integration into peace recovery programs was not well planned given the nature and coverage of the program to include other districts

Compiled by:

Jimmy Odyek