By Mike Ssegawa
He who has no culture, has no identity. True that.
But for how long shall we go looking down on other people’s cultures? When shall we stop seeing other people’s cultures as inferior to ours? When shall we start appreciating each other,even celebrate our differences?
If Uganda’s administrators need to build patriotism among the young citizenry, then, they better start teaching them their culture and history.
We all feel a strong affinity for who we are. And if we deny who are, then, we have no business talking about patriotism.
So, that’s why the idea of the Uganda International Cultural Fair has been long overdue.
The ministries of Tourism and Culture came together to support the initiative organized by Perfect Events.
Once in a while things happen that resuscitate my faith in our country, Uganda. And this is one of them.
Let me tell you why.
Kiwanda Godfrey, the new Tourism state minister is a man with a gift of the gab. Even before he became minister, the MP from Mityana district, was always a convincing one on matters he stands for.
Standing before the press at Media Centre in Kampala, he hit the right chords, calling upon Ugandans to use their languages to showcase the richness of Ugandan cultures.
“Tourism is beyond animals. We need to know about each other’s cultures,” he quipped, adding that the event taking place between July 29 and 31 will celebrate Ugandan cultures and turn their diversity into strength.
He was spot on further.
“Speaking different languages doesn’t make us different people,” Kiwanda saying alluding to the ghost of tribalism that once in a while haunt our motherland.
The minister, a youth himself, called upon young people to creatively use their cultures to make money through crafts, fashion, music, movies, theatre, etc.
Uganda isn’t short of creative minds. However, there has been lack of organization and support right from the top. Kiwanda is speaking the language leaders in countries that have harnessed their diversity for good, speak.
Another equally youthful state minister from Gender underscored the fact that whoever loses identity loses their soul.
Ms Peace Mutuuza, the Gender & Culture state minister explained how Ugandans can borrow each other’s cultures to make a unique Ugandan culture.
“Nigerians have tailored their own, and we follow them in films and music,” she said.
“Let’s appreciate our culture and be proud of it”, she advised.
With a few days left to the culture fair, let’s support this initiative that stands to bring more good from something we all cherish – ourselves. Our cultures.