issue number 011 august-october 2012
the inflight magazine of air uganda part of the
f Africa T o l r ur a e n
Dar es Salaam Dar es Salaam
asante issue number 011 august - october 2012
WE ARE THE WINGS OF EAST AFRICA Inside this Issue: Bayimba International WE ARE THE WINGS OF EAST AFRICA Music Festival Direct flights. Different countries. Affordable fares. Direct flights. Different countries. Affordable fares. Fly with us every time. Semliki Land of Plenty Fly with us every time. www.air-uganda.com www.air-uganda.com
The Cave Elephants of Mt. Elgon
Celebrating 50 Years of Sports
Celebrating years of Independence
Land of Plenty The Thames
of Music and Arts
Sings from the Soul
50 Years of Sport
ENTEBBE | NAIROBI | JUBA | DAR ES SALAAM | MOMBASA | KIGALI | BUJUMBURA
your complimentary copy
Welcome aboard this Air Uganda flight and thank you for choosing to fly with us.
very morning I make it a point to thank God for the gift of life and the opportunities life brings. I believe that Air Uganda has enabled you to explore some of these opportunities. Our aim is to give you a memorable experience and try not to make your travel with Air Uganda a mere chore. We are committed to ensuring that a booking on Air Uganda means a smooth and painless journey, from selecting your flights at our call centre or website, to check in, and on board our flights. That aside, I am excited to introduce our new sports and entertainment features as well as book reviews in this issue. In our entertainment section, we shine the spotlight on the Ugandan award-winning musician, Maurice Kirya, who is well known for his masterly guitar skills, both nationally and internationally. In sports, we feature and celebrate the one thing that unites Ugandans - the Uganda Cranes. We are elated to have reached one of our milestones at Air Uganda by moving to what is called a Self Handling Airport Operation. On 22 May 2012, we became the proud handlers of our own Airport operations and customers at Entebbe International Airport. This long awaited self handling project means that all airport related functions at Entebbe, from check in to flight dispatch are handled by our very own staff and not a third party handler. This also means that an Air Uganda staff member gets to handle you at every step of our flight process. Finally this time round, our main feature story is focusing on Uganda which will celebrate its 50th Anniversary on 9 October 2012. In remembrance of the same date in 1962, when the Union Jack was lowered in favour of the black, yellow, red national flag, I would like to invite you to join me and the rest of Uganda as we celebrate our 50th Golden Jubilee Independence in October 2012. On behalf of the entire Air Uganda team, I would like to thank you for your business and value you as our customer. We are committed to getting you to your destination on time and look forward to welcoming you back soon. Asante!
Jenifer B. Musiime Head of Sales & Marketing
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The Pearl of Africa is shinning again.
Celebrating 50 Years of Sport in Uganda
Every September, Kampala comes alive as a vibrant and eventful city – a veritable hub for innovation and creativity.
What was a spontaneous act of celebration four decades ago is now known as the ‘lap of honour’ or ‘victory lap’.
Semliki: Land of Plenty
Discover the rainforests of Semliki Wildlife Reserve, a slice of paradise on earth, wondrously blessed with topography, flora and fauna.
The views expressed in this magazine should only be ascribed to the authors concerned, and do not necessarily reflect the views either of the publishers or of Air Uganda. The printing of an advertisement in Asante does not necessarily mean that the publishers or Air Uganda endorse the company, product or service advertised.
Bayimba: International Festival of Music and Arts
Maurice has taken Ugandan music, fused it with R&B and jazz, and developed a unique style that will soon be recognisable worldwide.
City of the Sultans, Dar es Salaam
Explore Dar, the largest and richest city in Tanzania with a picturesque seaport and fascinating blend of African, Arabic and Indian influences.
Camerapix Magazines Ltd
Editorial Director: Editor: Editorial Assistant:
Rukhsana Haq Roger Barnard Cecilia W. Gaitho
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Maurice Kirya: Really Sings from the Soul
Azra Chaudhry, U.K Rose Judha Rukhsana Haq Jenifer B. Musiime
The Art of Giving
What makes the perfect gift, graciously given?
Feathered Creatures for the Table
With an innate desire for variety and change, white meat is a welcome treat.
Regulars Whats Up Uganda
Your most up to date events calender.
Meet the Staff
The Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant
Marking 60 years of The Queen’s reign, the Pageant was the highlight of a number of Diamond Jubilee celebrations.
A Nation’s Spirit
At the heart of every Olympic sports event, is the glorious medal ceremonies.
Cover picture: Watoto Childrens Choir, Uganda.
The Cave Elephants of Mount Elgon
Here are a true wonder of the natural world and a ‘must see’ species for any visitor to Uganda.
Editorial by Head of Sales & Marketing
Air Uganda News
24 Bookshelf 52 Air Uganda Flight Schedule 53
Tips for the Traveller
56 Air Uganda Offices 57 Route Map 58 Abato Corner 60 Crossword Puzzle & Sudoku
ASANTE meaning ‘Thank you’ in Kiswahili is published quarterly for Air Uganda by Camerapix Magazines Limited P.O. Box 45048, 00100 GPO Nairobi, Kenya | Tel: +254 (20) 4448923/4/5 | Fax: +254 (20) 4448818 E-mail: email@example.com Editorial and Advertising Offices: Camerapix Magazines (UK) Limited | 32 Friars Walk, Southgate, London, N14 5LP | Tel: +44 (20) 8361 2942 Mobile: +44 79411 21458 | E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Air Uganda, Marketing Office | Tel: +256 (0) 414 258 262/4 or +256 (0) 417 717 401 Fax: +256 414 500 932 | E-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org Investment House, Plot 4, Wampewo Avenue, Kololo Correspondence on editorial and advertising matters may be sent to either of the above addresses. ©2012 CAMERAPIX MAGAZINES LTD All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced by any means without permission in writing from the publisher. All photographs by Camerapix unless otherwise indicated.
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AIR UGANDA NEWS
Special Golden Jubilee Fare * Fly Daily to Kigali USD50 * return * Taxes and surcharges exclusive. Flying between Entebbe and Kigali just got better as Air Uganda has introduced a return special Golden Jubilee fare of $50 (exclusive of taxes and surcharges). With a choice of convenient daily flights, this promotional fare is available through travel agents or the website at www.air-uganda.com.
Fly Direct to Mombasa 5 times a week for only USD60 *One way, taxes exclusive. With the recently introduced direct flights to Mombasa, Air Uganda has launched a promotional one way fare for car dealers heading to the Port of Mombasa. From as low as $60 (one way exclusive of taxes), customers can book their flights from any of the Air Uganda offices or travel agents. Book now while seats last.
Nairobi Same Day Return From USD282* return *taxes inclusive For those travelling for business to Nairobi, Air Uganda offers same-day return journeys between the two cities. Our value-for-money fares from as low as $282 return (inclusive of taxes) enabling you to wrap up your business in a day.
Self Handling On 22 May 2012, we became the proud handlers of our own Airport operations and customers at Entebbe International Airport. This long-awaited self-handling project means that all Airport related functions at Entebbe, from check-in to flight dispatch are now handled by our own staff and not a third party handler.
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Latin Flavour Night Source of the Nile Festival The Festival on the Nile will celebrate cultural identity and unity through diverse cultural art practices of people along the Nile and traditional arts and cultural practices from other parts of the world.
Experience a mix of various Latin dances at the National Theatre, Kampala. Enjoy the thrills of New York Salsa, Cuban Salsa, cha cha cha, merengue, samba, bachata, jive and rumba.
WEAVER BIRD fiest ART This event aims at celebrating and promoting community arts. It features local Ugandan, regional and international artists. The festival is hosted three times a year by the Weaver Bird Community for the Arts in Masaka, Uganda.
weaver bird COMMUNITY FOR THE ARTS
5th Annual Nile Gold Jazz Safari This will feature Regina Belle, Gerald Albright and Marion Meadows in a Jazz &Soul tribute to Michael Jackson / The Jacksons and Whitney Houston.
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The Young Professionals Technology Symposium An annual event that seeks to recognise, reward and promote technology among young professionals plus create opportunities for commercialising their technologies by introducing them to mentors and financial institution. 700 participants from the region are expected.
Commonwealth Games Federation General Assembly International Trade Fair Uganda Manufacturers Association will hold the 20th Uganda International Trade Fair at Lugogo. The intention is to provide a wide platform for displaying products or services all over the world. This will help to extend industrial investment and economic growth in Uganda.
Delegates from 71 countries are expected to attend the CGF. This will boost Ugandaâ€™s economy through flights and accommodation at the Munyonyo Commonwealth Resort. The CGF is the organisation responsible for the direction and control of the Commonwealth Games.
Watoto Childrens Choir, Uganda.
50th Jubilee Celebrations Uganda got independence in October 1962 and will celebrate 50 years of Independence. Uganda invites everyone to come and participate in the celebrations.
The Nile Kayaking Festival New kayaking events and rafting races on the warm waters of the Nile.
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jubilee celebrations Photo: Watoto Childrens Choir, Uganda.
n 9 October 2012, Uganda celebrates 50 years of independence since the day it gained its freedom from Colonial rule in 1962. The country had been ruled by Great Britain as a Protectorate since 1894 but that era came to an end when the Duke of Kent formally handed over the instruments of freedom to Milton Obote, Ugandaâ€™s Prime Minister. With Independence came great expectations for the people of Uganda: the hopes for improved infrastructure; better health facilities, greater respect for local citizens and unity among the diverse groups in Uganda.
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In truth, Uganda did not exist as a single country when, in the 19th century, the first western explorers arrived, since at that time the area was divided into kingdoms. Shortly afterwards, the first missionaries came to Uganda and in their wake came trade. In 1888, the British government gave the Imperial British East Africa Company control of a territory consisting mainly of Buganda Kingdom. After the Treaty of Berlin in 1890, when Europeans carved up Africa without consulting any Africans, Uganda, Kenya and Zanzibar were declared British Protectorates in 1894. When the Uganda Protectorate was established the territory was extended beyond the borders of Buganda to an
area that roughly corresponds to that of present-day Uganda, except for a portion that is now in Western Kenya. The British ruled indirectly, giving the traditional kingdoms a considerable degree of autonomy, but favoured the recruitment of Buganda people for their civil service. Other tribal groups, unable to make inroads into the Buganda-dominated colonial administration or commercial sector, were forced to seek other avenues for advancement. The Acholi and Lango soon became dominant in the military. Thus were planted the seeds for the intertribal conflicts that were to tear Uganda apart following independence. By the 1950s the ‘winds of change’ were blowing through Africa and many colonial rulers made preparations to grant independence to their colonies. In Uganda the first elections were held on 1 March 1961. Benedicto Kiwanuka of the Democratic Party became the first Chief Minister. In the period leading up to independence there was considerable jockeying for position between rival parties and after April 1962 Uganda’s National Assembly consisted of 43 UPC (Uganda Peoples’
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uganda at 50 Army (NRA) and pledged to improve respect for human rights, end tribal rivalry, and conduct free and fair elections. In the meantime, human rights violations continued as the Okello government carried out a counterinsurgency in an attempt to destroy the NRA’s support.
a’s orates Ugand
ument in the
la commem art of Kampa
Congress) members, 24 KY (Kabaka Yekka) members, and 24 DP (Democratic Party) members. The new UPC-KY coalition led Uganda into independence in October 1962, with Milton Obote as Prime Minister and the Mutesa, King of Buganda becoming President a year later. In succeeding years, supporters of a centralised state vied with those in favour of a loose federation and a strong role for tribally-based local kingdoms. Matters came to a head in February 1966 when Prime Minister Milton Obote suspended the constitution and assumed all government powers, removing the positions of President and Vice President. In September 1967, a new constitution proclaimed Uganda a Republic, gave the President even greater powers, and abolished the traditional Kingdoms. On 25 January 1971, Obote’s government was ousted in a military coup led by armed forces commander Idi Amin Dada. Amin declared himself ‘President,’ dissolved the parliament, and amended the constitution to give himself absolute power.
as the Secretary General of the UNLF. This government adopted a ministerial system of administration and created a quasi-parliamentary organ known as the National Consultative Commission (NCC). The NCC and the Lule cabinet reflected widely differing political views. In June 1979, following a dispute over the extent of presidential powers, the NCC replaced Lule with Godfrey Binaisa. In a continuing dispute over the powers of the interim presidency, Binaisa was removed in May 1980 and for a few months Uganda was ruled by a military commission. The December 1980 elections returned the UPC to power under the leadership of President Milton Obote. He ruled until 27 July 1985, when an army brigade, composed mostly of ethnic Acholi troops took Kampala and proclaimed a military government. Obote fled to exile in Zambia. The new regime, headed by former defence force commander Gen. Tito Okello opened negotiations with Yoweri Museveni’s National Resistance
The NRA seized Kampala and the country in late January 1986, forcing Okello’s forces to flee north into Sudan. Museveni’s forces organised a government with Yoweri Museveni as President. Just as in the Independence celebrations of 1962, the post 1986 epoch ushered in a great sense of hope in Uganda’s chequered history. Twenty-six years later, the regime remains in place and much has been achieved, but there is still work to be done to meet the aspirations of the people. One area which has seen great strides is women’s rights. Since independence, women have been given a platform to air their views on a wide range of issues that contribute to Uganda’s development. Today, women make up 35 per cent of the Ugandan Parliament, occupy some key positions in government and the private sector, as ministers, ambassadors and academicians. In his swearing in on the steps of the Parliament Building on 26 January 1986, Museveni referred to the National Resistance Movement’s victory not as ‘a mere change of guards, but a fundamental change’. A great deal has been introduced that has changed the Uganda political scene: peace exists in most parts of the country;
Idi Amin’s six-year rule ended when the Tanzanian army, backed by Ugandan exiles, waged a war of liberation against Amin’s troops and the Libyan soldiers sent to help him. On 11 April 1979, Kampala was captured and Amin fled with his remaining forces to Libya. After Amin’s removal, the Uganda National Liberation Front formed an interim government with Yusuf Lule as President and Jeremiah Lucas Opira The late Jayant
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Muljibhai Madhv ani, leading entre
preneur, was bo rn
One area which has seen great strides is women’s rights. Since independence, women have been given a platform to air their views on a wide range of issues that contribute to Uganda’s development. participatory democracy – based on the system of Resistance Committees and Councils – has been introduced and taken root; and, perhaps most important of all, a new national constitution, based on the views of the people of Uganda, has been debated, enacted, and promulgated. In the realm of economics, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) administration has embraced the economic medicine prescribed by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, based on the total liberalisation of the economy and the full reorientation of that economy toward free-market forces – a strategy which, the NRM leadership assures Ugandans, will transform Uganda from a
peasant to an entrepreneurial society. The economic policies now in place are another example of fundamental changes that have been introduced. Uganda is still an overwhelmingly agricultural country, employing 7 out of 10 Ugandans, and its main export is coffee. Overall, the Ugandan economy has grown strongly and there is every reason to be optimistic about its future, although the country currently faces some harsh economic difficulties, in keeping with the rest of the world. Among measures planned to stimulate growth is a programme of road improvements. The impending commissioning of Bujagali Hydropower Dam and the reliable power it
is expected to provide, is another positive for the economy. Today, as the population of Uganda approaches 35 million, the prayer of many Ugandans is that peace and stability continue to prevail, as the road trodden by the country’s people since independence in 1962 has been difficult (as indeed has been the case with many African countries). Many feel that there is now light at the end of the tunnel; Ugandans hope that whatever lies ahead will enable them to enjoy peace, tranquillity, and more prosperity. All this will benefit not only Ugandans, but also their friends abroad, to whom the country has opened its doors, for them to visit as tourists or conduct business as investors. In this way the Pearl of Africa is shining again•
FORT PORTAL Set on the moist, verdant northern foot slopes of the Rwenzori, Fort Portal is one of the most attractive towns in Uganda. It is surrounded by Crater Lakes of Kabarole district, caves and tea estates. It is well placed for visits to the primaterich Kibale National Park and scenic Semliki National Park and Semliki Game Reserve hence a good starting point for a rich adventurous tour. Additionally, Fort Portal is the capital of the Toro Kingdom, hence the presence of the Royal Palace that overlooks the town.
ENTEBBE Entebbe is located on the shores of Lake Victoria, only 34 kilometres south of Kampala. It is home to Entebbe International Airport, the only one of its kind in Uganda. Three kilometres away is the well known Entebbe Botanical Gardens, a paradise for bird-watchers and botanists. Another popular tourist site is the Entebbe Wildlife Education Centre, a showplace of Africa’s vast wildlife species. In addition, a boat excursion on Lake Victoria to Ngamba Island Chimpanzee Sanctuary provides a great chance to see and interact with chimpanzees.
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KAMPALA The vibrant capital of Kampala, like legendary, Rome was built on seven hills. Head for the hills and take in the older cultural, historic and religious sites including the imposing Gaddafi Mosque – the largest in sub-Saharan Africa, the Bahai Temple, the only one of its kind in Africa and the Namugongo Martyrs Shrines – now a world heritage site of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) – where the Ugandan Martyrs died. Other popular drop-offs include the Uganda Museum, the Uganda National Theatre with its big crafts centre and Nakasero Market among others.
JINJA This is Uganda’s second largest town, located at the banks of Lake Victoria. It is here that the source of the Nile is marked by a plaque. The Nile River near Jinja has several grade five rapids which offer exhilarating white-water rafting and is ranked as one of the most thrilling and safest in the world. Presently, the eastern bank of the Nile between Jinja and Bujagali is the mecca for water sports; quad biking, kayaking, bungy-jumping, jet boat riding, river surfing and sportfishing. Nearby is Mabira Forest Reserve, home to an astonishing variety of bird and monkey species.
feSTIVAL Photos ÂŠ Meltem Yassar
Left: A visit to the Bayimba International Festival of the Arts is like going to another, seemingly mythical country, a hip and thrilling Brigadoon that appears every year.
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Above: The Bayimba Festival has become a highlight on Uganda’s exciting cultural calendar and a template for all the festivals that have since followed its example. Below: Now celebrating its fifth year, the 2012 Bayimba Festival will feature an extensive line-up of Ugandan artists, and is already shaping up to be one of the greatest yet.
adies and Gentlemen the ‘Season’ has begun! Time to slip the bonds of the office, get out those new summery outfits, picnic baskets, old school blazers, gorgeous strappy sandals, and head for Uganda’s vibrant capital – home to the Bayimba International Festival of the Arts, says Peter Holthusen.
Even if you’re not a fan of music and the arts, you’ll be perfectly aware that the quintessentially African setting of the Uganda National Cultural Centre in the heart of Kampala, with its spectacular Auditorium, Dance Studio, Restaurant, Resource Centre and worldrenowned Nommo Gallery, is steeped in entertainment history and that for one three-day period every September it becomes the focus of the world.
The brainchild of the Bayimba Cultural Foundation, the Festival was first organised in 2008, and is the main and most visible activity of the Kampala-based company, whose vision from the very outset of its inception was to form a vibrant arts and cultural sector that was professional, creative, viable and contributed to the social and economic development of Uganda and East Africa, while increasing awareness of the important role that arts and culture play in the societal community. At its launch in June 2008, only 1,000 people attended the Festival which was held at the famous Kyadondo Rugby Club in Kampala, home to the MTN Heathens, Toyota Buffaloes, Stallions, Thunderbirds and ENGSOL Tigers rugby teams, but it was nevertheless the first of its kind in Uganda and attracted the interest of the media. Small wonder the next venue chosen for the Festival was the Uganda National Cultural Centre, more often known by its official acronym the UNCC. A semiautonomous body, the Centre was officially inaugurated on 2 December 1959, and is now a vibrant institution guided by
unity in diversity, integrity and relevance to national development, nourishing, celebrating and promoting arts and culture. Today, the Bayimba International Festival of the Arts has grown into a multi-cultural event that attracts more than 50,000 people to the city of Kampala, drawing a diverse mix of locals, expats and tourists to a three-day celebration of the finest visual and performing arts, with a budget of approximately 110 million UGX. The Bayimba team, under the guidance of Artistic Director Faisal Kiwewa, has built tremendous capacity in Festival programming, technical and logistical planning, artist handling and promotion. Bayimba has also joined numerous other Festival and event networks within the region, such as the celebrated African Music Festival Network (AFRIFESTNET), and established links with a considerable number of famous festivals throughout the world, enabling mutual learning and artistic exchanges. With a varied and qualitative programming policy, presenting exciting, innovative and creative ideas to large audiences, each Bayimba Festival brings an unparalleled feast of music, dance, theatre, film, and visual arts from renowned and upcoming Ugandan, East African and international artists to Kampala.
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BAYIMBA FESTIVAL Ugandan and East African music and arts by building audiences and an appreciation for the arts and culture of the region. Most importantly, to highlight the Jubilee celebrations of both Uganda and Bayimba, the unique ‘Visionary Africa - Art at Work’ travelling platform, a joint initiative of the African Union and European Union, will be coming to Kampala at the time of the Festival with an itinerant urban exhi bition of contemporary African artistic practices, providing through the eye of African artists, a snapshot of the many transformations that have occurred on the African continent over the last 50 years.
The Bayimba Festival has become a highlight on Uganda’s exciting cultural calendar and a template for all the festivals that have since followed its example. Every September, Kampala comes alive as a vibrant and eventful city – a veritable hub for innovation and creativity. The Bayimba Festival is eagerly awaited by local artists and local people alike, while artists from abroad and visitors from as far afield as the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Australia and Latin America pour into Kampala to take full advantage of the exciting artistic experience. It is rapidly developing into an important East African destination Festival, enhancing both national and international cultural tourism in the process. Now celebrating its fifth year, the 2012 Bayimba Festival will take place from 21-23 September in the Auditorium at the Uganda National Cultural Centre, and is shaping up to be one of the greatest yet – and so it should be in the year that Uganda commemorates its 50 years of Independence. Much as it has in the past, there will be an excellent and extensive line-up of Ugandan artists, with established names such as Afrigo Band, one of the longest surviving popular bands in Uganda, and
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Baxmba Waves, the multi-cultural fusion band, presenting their latest artistic ventures, together with popular acts like the comedians from Fun Factory, and new and upcoming artists that will perform for the very first time at the Festival, such as the Beautiful Feet Dance Company and Mbale-based Titan. Other Ugandan participants include world-class acts such as Yoyo, Kabuye Semboga and, of course, Bakayimbira Dramactors, who have developed into a formidable troupe. As usual, local Kampalan artists will be joined by others from the region while Festival revellers can reckon on a considerable number of surprise acts from other parts of the world as well. The Festival will also include an interesting programme of art films and fascinating documentaries while the venue will also open its space to fashion shows and artistic installations. In common with world-renowned Festivals such as Cambridge and Glastonbury in the United Kingdom and the celebrated Edinburgh Festival in Scotland, a wide range of fringe events will also be organised in conjunction with the Bayimba International Festival of the Arts. Training sessions for new artists, exchanges and collaborations with visiting artists and various networking meetings, are all aimed at developing and promoting
And if that isn’t enough to tempt you to come to Bayimba, the National Theatre Restaurant at the Uganda National Cultural Centre is unrivalled, at least in Kampala. On Friday, the first day of the Festival, you can try culinary delicacies such as the famous finger-licking luwombo, the celebratory meal from Buganda that often comprises chicken, beef or goat meat and ground nuts mixed with dried fish or mushrooms – each individual portion steamed in banana leaves. I cannot begin to talk about the mouth-watering malewa, (their popular smoked bamboo shoots, a delicacy from Eastern Uganda), and eshabwe (ghee sauce) from Western Uganda, with crowned vegetables and all very often served with matooke or rice. A visit to the Bayimba International Festival of the Arts is like going to another, seemingly mythical country, a hip and thrilling Brigadoon that appears every year. Coming to Bayimba involves a fair amount of travel, and probably a queue to get in but, when you get past these minor impediments, you will be well rewarded for charting a course to her doors. This is the yardstick by which other Festivals must be judged. • [The Bayimba International Festival of the Arts: www.bayimba.org]
Left: The celebrated Bayimba International Festival of the Arts has grown into a multicultural arts Festival that attracts over 50,000 people to the city of Kampala.
Really Sings from the Soul, by Kalungi Kabuye.
t was just an exhibition by a local telecoms company. Entry was free, as was the music interlude that was to follow. It was to be in a small room that quickly filled to capacity with hordes of young people, the ones who will show up any time there are free things to be had. A couple of artists took the stage and did one or two songs, actually mimed them, and were on their way. The crowds didn’t seem to mind; after all, they were up and close to the singers. Then a break was announced, after which a band set up on the small stage. You could almost touch the thick air of anticipation in the audience. This was unexpected: a live band at a free concert. Who could it be? A few minutes later they found out as Maurice Kirya bounded onto stage, dressed in a T-shirt with the words ‘Kirya for President’ on the front. He then proceeded to turn the planned 20 minutes’ ‘free performance’ into a fullblown concert. He sang most of his songs, cracked jokes with the very appreciative crowd, gave away copies of his CD, and really, really sang. At the end everyone in the audience could have sworn that Maurice Kirya was the best musician in the land, and none would have disagreed. “They are all my fans,” he said at that time, “and I will give them all I have, wherever they are, whatever they paid, and whatever the occasion is.” It did not seem to matter to him that he was just coming off a Central African tour to almost a dozen countries; he gave it his all, just as he had been doing a day earlier in Addis Ababa. Kirya is a new breed among musicians in Uganda, and probably the whole region. Although he did grow up in what could be called a ghetto, the Ndeeba suburb of Kampala, he does not wear it on his sleeve. He does not wear dreadlocks, although he recently shaved his shaggy hair (that is another
story) and has never been known to abuse any substance.
to win Radio France International’s Discovery Award for ‘Best New African Artist’.
His clean-cut image is what is making waves, together of course with his music. In an industry where street creed is currency, he distances himself from the street and the dancehall beats that are preferred. Not to say that he has not paid his dues along the way.
That award came with a cash prize and an amount that goes into his various tours and promotions. He has never really looked back since then.
Growing up in a family of five siblings, Maurice at times had to look for his own school fees by doing odd jobs, errands, farm-work, working on building sites and working with local restaurants. He paid all of sh2,000 (less than a dollar) for his first guitar, which had been rescued from a garbage skip. “I got the wood fixed at a local carpenter’s,” he said, “and then I had to find wires to use as strings which I did, using clutch pedal wire from a garage!” His first guitar lesson was from a village drunk who showed him how to tune it and taught him his first chords. Meanwhile his elder brothers were dabbling in dancehall and hip hop, and two of them, Alex (now known as Sabasaba) and Elvis (Vampos) are star musicians in their own right. Maurice was inevitably in awe of them, but was to break away, ‘busking’ as he put it. “Basically, it’s what musicians often do in New York, Detroit, the streets of Paris… offering free performances to passers-by, breaking out into acapellas or running through a saxophone solo on a street corner.” He formed a group called The Outkamaz, and they would raid birthday parties, gate crash graduation parties and insist on performing, free. At this time he was also singing regularly in church, at his mother’s insistence, in addition to attending piano lessons. His formative years came to a head when he started the Maurice Kirya Experience, a once-a-week gig at a disco in Kampala. It was one of only two live band acts in town, the other being the Jam Session at the National Theatre. All that seems a long time ago, and it really changed with his album Misubbaawa, one of the best to come out of Uganda in years. It was released in 2010 in what was to become a watershed year for the rising singer. That year he became the first ‘Anglophone’ singer
Kirya was also nominated in three categories of the 2011 eWorld Music Awards held annually in Hollywood, in the United States. He won the Best World music artist and best Indie Group/Progressive. And when he held his first concert at the Serena Victoria Hall every single seat was taken, and the tickets were the highest-priced that Ugandans had ever paid for a concert by a local singer. After that he embarked on an African tour that took him to more than a dozen African countries, making him a bona fide continental star. And in the process it might just help save Ugandan music. ‘Most Ugandan artists prefer dancehall, and many of them just copy stuff from the Caribbean,” said a Kampala music critic. “But Maurice has taken Ugandan music, fused it with R&B and jazz, and developed a unique style that will soon be recognisable worldwide. Our other musicians should take a page from his book.” The Book of Kirya is what his second album, soon to be released, will be called. It will continue his unique blend of music which he calls Mwooyo, a Luganda word for soul. Soul is what Maurice brings to the table every time he performs, as those young folks at the free expo found out. And at the Big Brother Star game eviction show, Africa’s largest TV reality show, he had the audience singing along with him the chorus of the song Misubbaawa. No artist has ever done that, then or since. “Maurice Kirya is easily becoming the biggest music star in the country today, which is a good thing,” said music critic and musician Dennis Asiimwe. “As a musician has his strength in an area that a lot of other musicians seem to take for granted or simply lack: songwriting or composition. This is his strength, more than his voice, even way more than his ability as a performer. It is his strength as a songwriter/composer that helps him stand out, and because song writing and composition are so innate, Maurice himself probably doesn’t know just how ingrained this trait is in him.” • www.mauricekirya.com www.twitter.com/mauricekirya
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MEET THE STAFF… Francis Asiimwe
aving lost both my parents in the 1986 war in Fort Portal in western Uganda, I was taken to an orphanage at a very tender age of three years by an organization called Ambassadors of Hope. My hope was renewed. I had a chance to live again as any child with parents. I was introduced to music and I joined the African Children’s Choir. A most exciting part of my life followed, having the opportunity to travel around the world to the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States of America, singing with international personalities like Sandi Patty, Ron Kenoly, Michael W Smith and many others. I went through school majoring in the American Standard of Education and the Ambassadors of Hope/African Children’s Choir catered for my needs for school, right from primary level through to University. Through travelling and meeting different people I was inspired to work in an industry that catered for people’s needs. I decided to pursue my dream by studying Hospitality Management and Tourism with the hope that after I graduated I would be able to join either a cruise liner or an airline. I graduated from Makerere University in 2006, and I did my internship at Kabira Country Club and Emin Pasha, in Uganda. Finally my dream came true when I applied for, and was accepted for, a job with Air Uganda as a flight attendant in 2008. I wake up every day and I am living my dream. I still do charity work with the Ambassadors of Hope and also hope that, one day, I will be able to help children orphaned at such an early age to find a home like I did, and also achieve their dreams. I am thankful because that light could have gone out many years ago had I not found caring people to take me in. I meet new people every day when I get to fly and I am dedicated to making their experiences worthwhile for the time that they are with us on board the aircraft, because they are the reason I am living my dream.•
20 asante aug – oct 2012
4)6*361%2') *962-7,-2+7 9 08( P.O. BOX 14016, Plot 8 Hannington Rd, Kampala Uganda (Opposite Serena Hotel)
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A Nation’s Spirit The Olympics may have come and gone but the National Anthems endure. Frankly, there have been occasions where I just wished they’d only show some shortened highlight, because the sports only distract me from the main event: the medal ceremonies, says Brian Johnston.
he coveted gold is bestowed, bunches of flowers handed over. And then the supreme moment that tugs at the hearts of every citizen of the winning country: the national anthem crackles over the loudspeakers. If only they’d put the words of each anthem up on the screen, we could all join in, and then we really would have a great time. The oldest national anthem in the world is Wilhelmus van Nassouwe. The Dutch national anthem was written for Prince William of Nassau in 1568 and set to the music of a French soldiering song. Not a word of its 20 verses has been changed since, although the Dutch make do with singing just the first and eighth verses. One of the newest national anthems, on the other hand, is that of the United Arab Emirates, for which a competition for best lyrics was held in 1996; the winner scooped a US$120,000 prize. Which is the world’s most famous national anthem? Hard to say, but La Marseillaise must be among the contenders, a stirring and blood-thirsty song first heard during the French Revolution. Not all Frenchmen are happy with their song’s violent lyrics. It was suggested that the line March! March! That their impure blood may drench our furrows be changed to the more genteel March! March! That an azure sky may shine upon the horizon, but the French National Assembly turned it down.
Many national anthems are surprisingly bloodthirsty, since they were usually created at a time of great political change, revolution or war. The Marseillaise was written in one night in 1792 when the French army was encamped outside Strasbourg, defending the city against invading Prussians, with a swaggering tune intended to stir French soldiers to battle. Another much-recognised anthem, God Save the Queen, was written when the British were worrying about an invasion from Napoleonic France. Scatter her enemies, make them fall, trumpet the verses. Some voices, including that of Andrew Lloyd-Webber, have called for changes to these words too, particularly the desire in the fifth verse the rebellious Scots to crush. The Chinese national anthem is also far from benign. Arise! Arise! Arise! it goes, before exhorting the Chinese to March on! Brave the enemy’s gunfire! Perhaps the most casual in its attitude to warfare is the anthem of the Congo, which comments, And if we have to die, what does it really matter? Other anthems celebrate great victories. The American Star-Spangled Banner is the most famous example, but who couldn’t fail to be moved by the Cambodian song, which runs: Hurrah for the 17th of April, That wonderful victory had more significance than the Angkor Period! And I’m sure it did. But let us all hope beyond hope that some athlete from Burkina-Faso wins
a gold medal, so we can all sing Against the humiliating bondage of a thousand years / Against the cynical malice / Of neo-colonialism and its petty local servants / Many gave in, but some resisted. Neutral Switzerland avoids any bloodthirsty lyrics, and with great diplomacy offers one verse in each of their four national languages. The Czechoslovakians, when the country was split in two, politely opted to split their anthem down the middle as well. And there’s nothing violent about The Call of South Africa, which is a gentle song that includes the suggestion that South Africans should Bless agriculture and stock raising and well as Banish all famine and diseases and then Fill the land with good health. Countries take their anthems very seriously. Until recently there was a law in the USA prohibiting alteration to the tune, harmonies or words of The Star-Spangled Banner. In the 1960s Jimi Hendrix caused uproar with his electric guitar version at Woodstock. Classical composer Benjamin Britten’s version of God Save the Queen also caused quite a stir long before the days when the Sex Pistols dealt it a final blow. But the Brits aren’t the only people with an interest in their tune, which was written by noted composer
Henry Purcell in a reworking of a popular French court air. Many of the newly created European states (such as Germany and Norway) used it for their own anthems throughout the 19th century, and it’s still used by Liechtenstein. God Save the Queen tends towards the slow, hymn-like Victorian mood that is now echoed in the anthems of many Anglo-Saxon countries.(New Zealand’s is a good example). Monarchs are saluted in the national anthems of a variety of countries from Japan and Monaco to Bhutan and Morocco. Denmark’s national anthem is based on a national hero and former king. Curiously enough, there are no official words to the Spanish national anthem, the Royal March, although different words have been penned by two lyricists. South American anthems, on the other hand, are neither martial nor hymnal but sound like arias from an Italian opera, and tend to be just as long. The music for at least three of them was actually composed by Italians and they tend to be ambitious and complicated affairs. Brazil takes the crown, with over 100 bars to its anthem (O beloved, idolized homeland, hail, hail!). But beware of Greeks, since that country probably has the world’s longest national anthem, with 158 stanzas of four lines each. It was written in 1823 about the heroic deeds of Greek freedom fighters: ‘Twas the Greeks of old whose dying / Brought to birth our spirit free / Now, with ancient valour rising / Let us hail you, oh Liberty! If you haven’t got the stamina, stick with the anthems of Middle Eastern countries; many of these are short and sweet, little more than a fanfare flourish, and some without any text. Qatar’s takes just 32 seconds, which some might see as a great improvement on Uruguay’s full five minutes. A final category of national anthems is the slightly folkloric style, largely taken up in Asian countries, who
arrived relatively late with their national anthems. The songs of Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Japan are based on folk music and some Asian anthems actually call for indigenous instruments to be played. Perhaps the most gentle of all anthems belongs to Bangladesh, which runs: In spring, O mother mine / The fragrance of your mango groves / Makes me wild with joy. The words were penned by Nobel Prize-winning poet, Rabindranath Tagore, who also wrote the lyric to the Indian national anthem. If a representative of some unexpected country does win an Olympic medal, prepare for confusion. In the Tokyo Olympics of 1964, Abebe Bikila of Ethiopia became the first person to win two consecutive marathons. At the medal ceremony the band realised to their alarm that it had no idea what the national anthem of Ethiopia was. They settled instead on playing the far more familiar Japanese national anthem, much to the confusion of the spectators. Fortunately these days all the national anthems are stored electronically, ready to play at a moment’s notice. Let us all wait with bated breath – if only those preliminary sporting events would be over quicker! The ‘wind of change’ which blew through African colonies in the 1950s and 60s spawned a host of new national anthems for those nations which became independent. Uganda was no exception. Fifty entries were submitted and considered by a committee headed by Prof. Senteza Kajubi. Words for the winning entry were produced by Prof. George William Kakoma in collaboration with Mr P. Wyngard, an English master at the then Makerere College, and set to music by Mr E. A. Moon, director of music with the Uganda Police Force. The new anthem was played on Radio Uganda for the first time on 9th August 1962. There was subsequently a small alteration to the wording, before it settled on the now familiar version:
Uganda National Anthem Oh Uganda! may God uphold thee, We lay our future in thy hand. United, free, for liberty Together we’ll always stand. Oh Uganda! the land of freedom. Our love and labour we give, And with neighbours all At our country’s call In peace and friendship we’ll live. Oh Uganda! the land that feeds us By sun and fertile soil grown. For our own dear land, We’ll always stand, The Pearl of Africa’s Crown.
For Uganda’s neighbours, the national anthem of Kenya became official in 1963, on the date of the country’s independence. The words were written by a commission appointed by the government. The task given to them was to select a tune that took into account the traditional music of Kenya, which would both have dignity and also lend itself to harmonisation and orchestration for performance by orchestras and military bands. The music would also have to fit both the English and Swahili lyrics. Tunes from many parts of the country were considered. The final choice was a tune sung by mothers for their children from Pokomo country. The lyrics, which begin: O God of all creation, Bless this our land and nation were meant to establish a common identity for Kenyans from all tribes and to express convictions held deeply by all of them. The words of the Tanzanian national anthem, Mungu Ibariki Africa (God Bless Africa), were written by a committee and set to the music of a hymn composed in 1897 by Enoch Sontonga, a South African Methodist school teacher. Parts of the same anthem were used to form South Africa’s new anthem in 1997. •
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Speak Swahili Dammit
By James Penhaligon.
This is an extraordinary, hilarious and heartbreaking book – an inspiring biographical account of a young white boy’s chaotic life in a remote, wild, corner of East Africa. Born in Africa, James’s childhood is spent on an isolated gold mine near Lake Victoria, Tanganyika, with just his sister and mother; his father tragically dying through injuries sustained from World War II. His upbringing is mainly left to a tribal ayah called Amina and an elderly Swahili man, and he learns to speak Swahili before English. In this unusual setting he soon discovers some stark facts about life through tragedy and danger, but it is the local watu, imbued with kindness and irrepressible humour, that save him from despair, and with whom he learns to fish with home-made lines, eat insects and famously abuse the European hierarchy in real Swahili! Known as ‘Jimu’ to his friends, he marks out his own country with a Sukuma boy named Lutoli, falls
deeply in love with the beautiful, but older, German girl Gretchen and throws himself out of the back of a bus to try to avoid being sent away to school. Once at school, in Arusha, James tends to mix with other non-conformers and presents a dilemma to teachers – he is a white boy with a ‘black spirit’. His gang gets up to nefarious enterprises, bringing them into a state of permanent conflict with the system. James is fascinated with the history of Tanganyika back to the time when it was a German Colony until 1918. The unparalleled courage of the German leader Paul von Lettow Vorbeck against the British is a beacon to the young boy of what can be accomplished against adversity. Above all James discovers the world, and life, a little by education, a lot by accident, but overwhelmingly by fate and happenstance, in circumstances few people in the developed world have experienced.
of understanding of this necessity however, varies from person to person. Even those who do not pray or go to church would often be heard muttering especially in difficult situations, the words such as ‘let’s hope and pray’. Some people only pray when times are hard, others make an effort to pray but their prayer time is something they would rather see the end of as quickly as possible. Zion, in her book, Prayer, has expounded on many things that could make our praying enjoyable experiences. Prayer will inspire those who are keen to take their prayer lives to another level.
How to Change the World, One Dead Mosquito at a Time By Alex Perry.
By Zion Mukisa. Prayer is an absolute necessity in our lives, says the author. The level
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One day in 2006, the rich, well-connected but very private philanthropist Ray Chambers flicked through the holiday snaps of his friend, the development economist Jeffrey Sachs, and remarked on the
placid beauty of a group of sleeping Malawian children. ‘They’re not sleeping,’ Sachs tells a shocked Chambers. ‘They’re in malarial comas.’ A few days later, they were all dead. So begins Chambers’ mission to eradicate a disease that has haunted mankind since before medicine began, still infects half a billion people a year, and kills a million of them. The campaign draws in presidents, celebrities, scientists and enormous funding and becomes a stunning success, saving millions of lives and propelling Africa towards prosperity. And by replacing traditional ideas of assistance with business acumen and hustle, Chambers upturns the whole notion of aid, forging a new path not just for the developing world but for global business, religion and even celebrity. As he follows three years of the campaign, award-winning journalist Alex Perry takes the reader across Africa, from a terrifying visit to a Ugandan town that is the most malarial on earth to a star-studded World Cup concert, encountering scientists, fugitive guerrillas, presidents, religious leaders and icons of the global aid industry. In Lifeblood, he weaves together science and history with on-the-ground reporting and a riveting exposé of aid as he documents this race against time. The result is a thrilling and all-too-rare tale of humanitarian triumph that has profound implications for how to build a better world. Alex Perry is the Africa bureau chief for Time magazine.Publication date: September 2011
of Sport in Uganda By Joseph Kabuleta.
ater this year, as the spectacle of the London Olympics draws to a close and Uganda clears its deck in preparation for a gargantuan 50th Independence celebration that will undoubtedly touch all walks of life, the world of athletics will be commemorating an equally significant anniversary of its own.
What was a spontaneous act of celebration four decades ago is now known as the ‘lap of honour’ or ‘victory lap’.
Forty years ago, at the Olympics in Munich, an athlete, hardly known until then, ran the race of his life to cross the finish line 10 metres ahead of the field. He then picked up his national flag from a spectator, unrolled it, held it high, and encircled the stadium absorbing the adulation of an audience that had been bewildered by his world record performance. The flag was a Ugandan one, and the athlete was 23 yearold John Akii-Bua. “I just carried on running and running,” he said later. A legend was born, and so was a tradition. What was a spontaneous act of celebration four decades ago is now known as the ‘lap of honour’ or ‘victory lap’ and has become an ingrained Olympic tradition performed by virtually all triumphant track athletes. The man who started it in 1972 is Uganda’s legendary 400 metre hurdler who, on that evening, obliterated a field of distinguished athletes that included Britain’s David Hemery, the previous record holder and a red hot favourite for the gold medal. Running in the inside Lane, the lanky Akii-Bua looked to be trailing irretrievably
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at the halfway stage and only emerged as a contender on the final bend. But by the time he crossed finish line he was well clear of his closest challenger. What made his triumph all the more remarkable is that there was nothing from the hurdler’s previous performances that suggested that such a feat was within the realm of possibility. Akii-Bua had finished a distant fourth at the 1970 Commonwealth games in Edinburgh, Scotland and hadn’t accumulated any competitive experience in the consequent years. But his ascent to greatness was in many respects birthed at London when a 27 year-old PE teacher in a Bristol secondary school and part-time athletics coach answered an advert in Athletics Weekly. Malcolm Arnold then went for an interview in London’s Trafalgar Square and returned home to tell his wife and two young children that they were headed for Uganda. “His name was difficult for us, so we simply called him ‘Mzungu’, a Kiswahili word for ‘white man’,” Akii-Bua said in his pencilwritten memoirs left with the coach. Arnold encountered a rudimentary competition structure, patchy grass tracks – and talent. He introduced a little modernity to the training regime that included scientific ‘periodisation’ of an athlete’s year into different phases of preparation, the first to build endurance and stamina, then, in the weeks before the season, honing speed, sharpness and technique.
Above: Commonwealth Games - AustraliaMelbourne, Inzikuru celebrates gold 22.03.06. Middle: Cranes striker Brian Umony leaves the Namboole pitch in tears after Uganda could only draw 0-0 with Kenya and failed yet again to qualify for the African Nations Cup. Right: Uganda’s John Akii Bua races ahead of Britain’s David Hemery to win gold in Munich 1972.
Perhaps Arnold’s biggest success was in convincing Akii-Bua to abandon the 110m hurdles for which he wasn’t suited and concentrate on the 400 metre hurdles. Even if he didn’t compete much in the two years between Edinburgh 1970 and Munich, Akii-Bua engaged himself in the most gruelling training regimes imaginable. He did hill-running in a weighted vest, repeated 600m runs with just a minute’s interval, morning and afternoon. The athlete acknowledged in his notes that such a programme was “not natural”. But it was effective. “The Ugandan national anthem played (at the medal ceremony) as I stood to attention with the whole stadium in respect to this small nation, which was on its way to disaster in the years to follow,” wrote Akii-Bua. After his success in Uganda, Arnold moved back to Britain in the early 1970s and worked with such luminaries as sprinter Linford Christie and the Welsh 110 metre hurdles legend Colin Jackson. He went on to head the Great Britain track and field team to the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. Yet in an interview with the Guardian newspaper in 2008, the soonretiring coach admitted that the first cut was in many respects the deepest. “Of all the athletes I have worked with, I put John (Akii-Bua) number one,” he said,
own career has made me realise quite how remarkable he was,” concluded Arnold.
as he looked nostalgically back to his days in Uganda and the triumph in Bavaria. “He came from very poor circumstances, living in a hovel while working as a policeman. We worry today about the technology of drugs; he struggled for one square meal a day. From there, his achievement was incredible. “He had everything: enormous talent, a huge commitment and capacity for work, a very astute mind, and from nowhere reached dizzy heights. Yet the sadness is, he only really had two years. Reviewing my
The story of a policeman who rose from obscurity and blew the Munich field away to set a new world record has been told and retold, but it still has not been equalled. As Uganda marks 50 years since the British Union Jack was lowered and the blackyellow-red flag of the Colony was hoisted amidst ululations, Akii-Bua’s 1972 feat still stands unchallenged at the pinnacle of the country’s sporting success. Whether that points to a nation’s underachievement or
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sports old Kipsiro was seen as a prospective new king. But he missed the event for unclear reasons. He could still make amends at London 2012, but anybody who has followed the careers of previous Ugandan athletes will not be quick to put a wager on him. The Uganda Cranes, the national soccer team, played all the way to the final of the African Nations Cup in 1978, where they lost to hosts Ghana, and a period of dominance thereafter was expected. Instead, Uganda went into an unmitigated decline and has not qualified for the biennial tournament since. Consequent qualifying campaigns have been about hopes raised before being cruelly dashed.
accentuates the greatness of its forerunner is open to debate. It’s probably a bit of both. The athlete spoke of how he lost three of his brothers in that period. Amidst such disquiet, his training for the 1976 Olympics in Montreal was far from sufficient, which was just as well because he never got the chance to defend his medal. He had arrived with the Ugandan team in Canada, ready to compete, when the 25 African countries withdrew from the Games because New Zealand, which had a team at the Olympics, were also playing rugby against South Africa. Akii-Bua was on a plane back home when the 400 metre race was being run in Montreal. When he landed, a journalist broke the news to him. “Your record is gone.” Davis Kamoga, another gifted athlete, came out of nowhere and shook the world briefly before returning straight back to oblivion. The 400 metre runner spent much of his formative years attempting to forge a football career that he never had the talent to sustain, then out of frustration tried his hand in athletics. Within less than two years he had won a bronze medal at the Olympics in Atlanta 1996. The following year he snatched silver at the World Athletics Championships in Athens.
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But just when Ugandans were looking forward to the prospect of a rivalry between one of their own and the dominant Michael Johnson, Kamoga, without any warning, clocked out before his time and has not been seen competitively since. Next on the catwalk of Ugandan one-hit wonders was Dorcus Inzikuru. The country girl from the northwest of the country surprised the world and herself when she won the 3,000 metre steeplechase gold medal at the World Championships in Helsinki 2007. She was only 24 at the time and an era of dominance was similarly predicted. Instead, like others before her, she vanished in the mists and hasn’t competed, much less won, at an international event of that magnitude since. Then along came Moses Kipsiro. After threatening to burst on to the world scene for a number of years, he won the 5000 metre and 10,000 metre gold medals at the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi two years ago, becoming the first athlete in the 70-year history of the Games to win both distance events. With Ethiopian legend Kenenisa Bekele battling injury, the 5,000 m stage was vacant at the 2011 World Championships in Daegu and the 26 year-
Above: Dai Greene presents athletics coach Malcolm Arnold with the J.L.Manning Award for an Outstanding Contribution to Sport – the SJA 2011 Sports Awards on December 7, 2011 in London. Arnold’s first success was with John Akii Bua in Uganda.
Yet in spite of all the heartbreak suffered in more than three decades of exclusion from the big stage, football is unrivaled as the abiding passion of the country and Cranes are the single most unifying force in Uganda. Every campaign is treated with the same excitement and expectation that this could be the year when all the pentup pain gives way to euphoria. Draws for the next Nations Cup have dealt Uganda a cruel blow, it would seem, as the Cranes will take on reigning champions Zambia for a place in South Africa 2013. But Ugandans are bubbling with expectation nonetheless and the symmetry of their arguments is difficult to ignore. The final leg of the qualifying campaign will be played in Kampala in October, the very month Uganda celebrates 50 years as an independent nation. The first 50 years of sport have been about random success and unfulfilled potential. Will the invisible scriptwriter of the next era be a little kinder to Ugandan sport and inscribe some happier endings? Could it all start in the festive month of October with a victory over African champions Zambia and that longawaited trip to the African showpiece? What a script that would be; one to rival Cinderella and the fitting shoe for fairytale romance. Ugandans wait. • Joseph Kabuleta is a freelance journalist who writes on sport and culture: email@example.com
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Semliki Land of Plenty
â€œI have enjoyed the privilege of visiting Uganda on a number of expeditions in the past and Semliki has always held a very special place in my heart. If your idea of peace and tranquility is a green and golden landscape studded with trees and scattered with herds of pretty Uganda kob,then this is the place to come, writes Peter Holthusen.
unlight filters down through the dense tree canopy above, sparkling off dewdampened leaves and mosscovered boulders. The humid air wraps itself around monumental tree trunks and ferns, while in the distance a waterfall tumbles into a crystal-clear pool. Insects hum, birds call across the almost infinite horizon. Welcome to the rainforests of the Semliki Wildlife Reserve, a slice of paradise on earth
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and only five hours drive from Kampala. Previously known as the Toro Game Reserve, Semliki is the oldest protected area in Uganda and home to a staggering array of flora and fauna. It is unique, beautiful and blessed with a tortured topography of natural barriers that have formed a veritable haven for wildlife. The Semliki Wildlife Reserve, located within the boundaries of the new Semliki National Park, is situated 375 kilometres west of
Kampala in the lush and verdant basin of the Western Rift Valley. It is one of the most diverse habitats in Africa with wonderful examples of riparian forest, gallery rainforest, Borassus palm forest, and short and high grass savannah. The habitat diversity within the 558 square-kilometre area of the Reserve supports an array of fauna including lion, leopard, elephant (both savannah and forest species), Uganda kob, buffalo, impala, and chimpanzees as well as a staggering number of birds, with
the richest areas of floral and faunal diversity in Africa, bird species being especially diverse.
over 400 species having been recorded in the area. To reach the Reserve, you leave Fort Portal (the closest town to Semliki) by the road towards the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and a bumpy three hours drive. Once a winding gravel or ‘murram’ road, this is now rapidly being transformed into a broad four-lane tarmac highway and no doubt shortly to be the main route out of the DRC for all their precious minerals and metals. Once at Karagutu, at the bottom of the escarpment, the traveller makes a decision to go either to Bundibugyo, on the border with
the DRC, via the Semliki National Park and Sempaya Hot Springs or to do what we did, turn right across the savannah and aim for the Semliki Wildlife Reserve. The Semliki National Park is located in Bwamba County, a remote part of the Bundibugyo District on western Uganda’s border with the DRC. It was elevated to the status of a National Park in October 1993, and is one of Uganda’s newest National Parks, with no less than 194 square kilometres of East Africa’s only lowland tropical rainforest being found in the park. It is managed by the Uganda Wildlife Authority and is one of
From 1932 to 1993, the area covered by the Semliki National Park was managed as a forest reserve, initially by the colonial government and then by the Ugandan Government’s Department of Forestry. It was made a National Park in order to protect the forests as an integral part of the protected areas of the Western Rift Valley. Above: Uganda Kob. Above left: From 1932 to 1993, the area covered by the Semliki National Park was managed as a forest reserve, initially by the colonial government and then by the Ugandan Government’s Department of Forestry. Today it is managed by the Uganda Wildlife Authority and is one of the richest areas of floral and faunal diversity in Africa. Opposite page: The spectacular Semliki Wildlife Reserve, 375 kilometres west of Kampala, is one of the most diverse habitats in Africa with wonderful examples of riparian forest, gallery rainforest, Borassus palm forest, and short and high grass savannah.
The Park is part of a network of protected areas in the Ugandan sector of the Albertine Rift Valley. Other protected areas in this network include the Rwenzori Mountains, the Bwindi Impenetrable Forest National Park, the Mgahinga Gorilla National Park, the Kibale National Park, and the lush savannah of the Queen Elizabeth National Park, with its elusive giant forest hog and legendary tree-climbing lions. This largely forested Park represents the eastern-most limit of the great Ituri forest of the Congo Basin and contains numerous species of flora and fauna associated with
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semliki Central rather than Eastern Africa. Semliki is the only Park in Uganda composed primarily of tropical lowland forest. The land is quite flat, creating a startling contrast to the rugged Rwenzori Mountains nearby. The Park borders the Semuliki and Lamia rivers which are watering places for many animals. There are also two hot springs located in a hot mineral encrusted swamp. This amazing field of boiling water at the Sempaya Hot Springs ejects a conspicuous cloud of steam seen as far away as two kilometres. According to the records at the Uganda Wildlife Authority, Sempaya’s water temperature at over 1,000˚C is well above the maximum temperature of most hot springs worldwide. The average temperature for most hot springs is about 500˚C. Tourists have been seen to boil eggs, cassava and green bananas in the two geothermal heating springs. The first hot spring is a pool – 12 metres in diameter – and the second is a field of geysers. Both ooze steamy sulphur-scented waters reputed to have healing powers. One of the springs – Mumbuga – regularly forms a 50 centimetres high fountain. These spectacular natural wonders attract a large number of shorebirds and they are a valuable source of salt and other minerals for many animals. To the north of Semliki is Lake Albert whilst to the east dense woodland climbs the steep valley wall. On the western horizon are the Congolese Blue Mountains and in the south a spur of rugged hills climbs up to the ice-capped peaks of the legendary Rwenzori ‘Mountains of the Moon’. The majority of the Reserve is open
acacia woodland and grassland whilst patches of gallery forest border the rivers. The area that Semliki covers is a distinct ecosystem within the larger Albertine Rift system. The Park is located at the junction of several climatic and ecological zones and, as a result, has a high diversity of plant and animal species and many microhabitats. Most of the plant and animal species in the Reserve are also found in the Congo Basin forests, many of which reach the eastern limit of their range in the Semliki National Park. Of the 400 bird species found in Semliki, 216 of these (66 per cent of the country’s total bird species) are true forest birds, including the rare forest ground thrush, Congo serpent eagle, long-tailed hawk, forest francolin, the lyretailed honeyguide and Sassi’s olive-green bulbul. Nine species of hornbill have been recorded in the Park, while the shore of Lake Albert and the swamps that surround it are home to a variety of common and rare waterbirds including the enigmatic shoebill stork and vast colonies of redthroated bee-eaters.
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The game populations in the Semliki Wildlife Reserve were at one time enormous but the poaching and hunting that occurred during the civil war and throughout the 1980s saw the numbers plummet. However, since the early ‘90s the Reserve has been protected by the Ugandan Government and, although the numbers do not yet equal those of the reserve’s heyday, they are increasing rapidly. In addition to the resident population of lion, leopard and
Above: The Semliki (also known as Semuliki) is a major river in Central Africa. It flows northwards from Lake Edward in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, across the Ugandan border and through the west of the country in Bundibugyo District, near the Semliki National Park. Below: The amazing field of boiling water at the Sempaya Hot Springs are one of Semliki’s most spectacular natural wonders. One of the springs – Mumbuga – regularly forms a 50 centimetres high fountain.
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Uganda kob are now commonly seen along with reedbuck, waterbuck, bushbuck and buffalo. The breeding population of elephants and lion appear to be re-colonising the Reserve from over the Congolese border, including the largemaned lions for which the reserve was once famous. The gallery forest is home to a variety of primates in addition to the chimpanzees, including black-and-white colobus and red-tailed monkeys.
Photo courtesy of Peter Holthusen
Above: Semliki is the oldest protected area in Uganda and home to a staggering array of flora and fauna, with over 400 bird species having been recorded in the area including the striking red-throated bee-eater. . Below: The forests of Semliki are also the home of the Bantuspeaking Batwa, or ‘Twa’ people, an indigenous community of short-statured people also known as ‘Pygmies’ who still largely live as hunter-gatherers.
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Photo courtesy of Peter Holthusen
elephant, Semliki has over 60 mammal species, including forest buffalo, pygmy hippos, mona monkeys, water chevrotains, bush babies, civets, and the endangered pygmy flying squirrel. Nine species of duiker are found in the Reserve, including the rare bay duiker. The forest has eight primate species and almost 300 butterfly species.
The forests in Semliki are of great socioeconomic importance to the human communities that live near the Reserve. The local people practice subsistence agriculture and use the park’s forests to supplement their livelihoods. Some of the products they obtain from the forests include fruits and vegetables, bushmeat, herbal medicines, and construction materials. The forest also plays an important cultural and spiritual role in local people’s lives. The forests are also the home of approximately 100 Bantu-speaking Batwa, or ‘Twa’ people, an indigenous community
of short-statured people also referred to as ‘Pygmies’ who still largely live as hunter-gatherers. The Bantu term ‘Twa’ is generally translated as ‘Pygmy’. However, in the Western conception ‘Pygmies’ are short forest-dwelling people, whereas southern Twa populations do not live in the forest and may not be shorter than the farming/village population, generally not reaching the anthropological definition of ‘Pygmy’ as males averaging less than 150 centimetres in height. The Batwa and Bambuti Pygmies are the country’s most ancient inhabitants, confined mainly to the hilly southwest, and they are anthropological relics of the hunter-gatherer cultures that once occupied much of East Africa. They left behind a rich legacy of rock paintings, such as those at the Nyero Rock Shelter near Kumi. Past practices of the managing authorities that excluded the local people created resentment among them. This reduced the effectiveness of conservation policies and contributed to the occurrence of illegal activities such as poaching and logging. However, since the 1990s, the Uganda Wildlife Authority has actively involved the local communities in Park planning and Semliki is rapidly becoming one of Africa’s leading wildlife conservation areas. With its relatively easy access from Kampala and Fort Portal, Semliki is Uganda’s prime ecotourism destination and offers employment opportunities for local villagers, giving them a financial alternative to clearing the forests for subsistence farming. For conservationists, Semliki’s discovery is timely. It brings hope that these ancient trees and the rare endemic species that live among them may be preserved for future generations. For scientists, the new creatures that almost certainly await discovery in the shelter of the massive trees, caves and streams that dot this spectacular landscape are an irresistible lure. I, for one, can’t wait to go back •
nd via Peter Holthu
Photo © Ian Redmo
LGON E T N U O M F O S T N A H P E L THE CAVE E ts tching the mysterious elephan
t of wa inerally relived his excitemsen ount Elgon to excavate the m M Peter Holthusen receent on ve ca of h int yr lab rk disappearing into th da Photo © Ian Redmond via rich rock for salt. Peter Holth
t is my first morning in the Mountain Elgon National Park and I wake long before dawn. The sky is still dark and the birds have just begun to twitter. Sitting on the lower slopes of the oldest and largest solitary volcano in East Africa, I can see the surrounding landscape of the plains and the distant Great Rift Valley spread out beneath me. Three decades previously, when I started my career as an explorer, I used to come to this spot to watch the more secretive animals; to listen for the roar that signalled the arrival of the king of all creatures, or look out for the shy herd of breeding elephants who enter Mount Elgon’s labyrinth of caves to lick the salt they gouge from the walls with their tusks.
Mount Elgon is an extinct shield volcano on the border of Uganda and Kenya, north of the port city of Kisumu and west of Kitale. The spectacular National Park within which it lies covers an area of 1,279 square kilometres and is 140 kilometres north east of Lake Victoria. Mount Elgon is an important water catchment for the Nzoia River and the Lwakhakha which flow into Africa’s largest lake and for the Turkwel River which flows into Lake Turkana. The mountain is named after the Elgeyo (also known as the Keiyo) people, who once lived in the huge caves on the south side of the mountain. The Mount Elgon massif consists of five major peaks: The mountain’s highest point, ‘Wagagai’ at 4,321 metres, is located entirely within
36 asante aug – oct 2012
The elephants enter these ca ves as whole fa very often with milies, youngsters in tow, and walk as 160 metres as far into the pitch da rkness to find stream in the a salt rock.
Uganda; ‘Sudek’ (4,302 metres) in Kenya; ‘Koitobos’ (4,222 metres), a flat-topped basalt column in Kenya, and the peaks of ‘Mubiyi’ (4,211 metres) rise majestically in Uganda and ‘Masaba’ at 4,161 metres in Kenya. Although Mt. Elgon was well known to Arab traders passing along the old slave routes to its east in Kenya, the celebrated explorer Henry Morton Stanley was the first to write about Mt. Elgon when he presumably saw it while circumnavigating Lake Victoria in 1875. Joseph Thompson, a British explorer and geographer was the first European to actually visit the central massif in 1883. Thompson referred to the mountain as “Masawa” or “Elgon” and generated curiosity among the explorers. In 1890, with a 400-man caravan, Frederick Jackson of the Imperial British East Africa Company was
Photo © Ian
the first European to visit Mt. Elgon’s caldera and to climb any of the major peaks. Ironically, Jackson climbed from the south and probably never even saw the summit of Masaba peak which was later named ‘Jackson’s Summit’ after him. Elgon’s slopes support a rich variety of vegetation ranging from montane forest to high open moorland studded with giant lobelia and groundsel plants, which varies with altitude. The mountain slopes are covered with East African Olive (Olea hochstetteri) and Aniegre (Aningueria adolfi-friedericii) wet montane forest. At higher altitudes, this changes to olive and Fern Pine (Podocarpus gracilior) forest, and then a Podocarpus and the African mountain bamboo (Arundinaria) alpine zone. Higher still is a African redwood (Hagenia abyssinica) zone with moorland heaths, Tree heaths (Erica arborea/
Philippia trimera), tussock grasses (such as Agrostis gracilifolia and Festuca pilgeri), herbs such as Alchemilla, Helichrysum, and the giant groundsels Senecio barbatipes and Senecio elgonensis. The mountain also supports an abundance of rare and endemic wildlife, and is home to a variety of small antelope, and forest monkeys, including the black-andwhite colobus and blue monkey, while leopard, giant forest hog, bushbuck, eland, duiker, buffalo, and elephants can be found on the lower slopes. Over 300 bird species can also be found in the area, including the endangered Lammergeier or bearded vulture, African goshawk, and the tiny Baglafecht weaver, but it is the world-renowned cave elephants that are the main draw to visitors to this spectacular mountain. The species of elephant who live on the mountain are savannah
elephants (Loxodonta africana africana), not the forest elephants of West and Central Africa. The ancient volcano of Mt. Elgon is penetrated by a suite of highlyunusual caves. The larger caves of Kitum, Ngwarisha, Chepnyalil, and Makingeny are neither limestone solution caves, nor lava tubes. Their origin lies in the interplay of unique geology with the fauna – particularly the elephants and other mammals who ‘mine’ the salt-bearing rock from the walls of the caves. Numbering only about 100 individuals, this unique population of elephants was hit hard by ivory poaching in the 1980s and ‘90s. Now, thanks largely to the work of the Born Free Foundation and the Uganda Wildlife Authority, who are helping to pay for their protection, and for the development of this beautiful National Park, their numbers are increasing. So, why is this population so special? Many land-living herbivores experience ‘salt hunger’. Their diet of plants does not supply them with enough minerals (e.g. sodium), so they seek these out in any digestible form that they can find. In many places this leads to animals congregating around salt licks, which are often favourite spots for safari tours. On Mt. Elgon, however, the only natural source of salt is more obscure – it is found in deep, natural caves in the side of the mountain.
ter Holthusen Redmond via Pe
near the ve paintings on the ancient ca e s in the regi ud nt cl ha in ep rk el ons in the Pa ence of cave ti es ac pr tr e at th r ct he Ot h depi Budadiri, whic trailhead at e. Ag c hi it ol Ne even in the
The elephants enter these caves as whole families, very often with youngsters in tow, and walk as far as 160 metres into the pitch darkness to find a salt seam in the rock. They then excavate the mineral-rich rock with their
37 asante aug – oct 2012
wild zone tusks, chipping off rough chunks of halite and eating these hidden gems as a vital dietary supplement. The most frequently visited cave in Mt. Elgon is Kitum, meaning ‘Place of Ceremonies’ in Maasai, which is over 60 metres wide and penetrates 200 metres into the mountain. It became notorious following the publication of Richard Preston’s book The Hot Zone in 1994 for its association with the Marburg virus after two people who had visited the cave (one in 1980 and another in 1987) contracted the disease and died. Henry Rider Haggard’s hugely popular novel King Solomon’s Mines is also reputed to have been inspired by the Mt. Elgon caves. In 2001, Born Free started funding the Mount Elgon Monitoring Team – the MEEM Team – which had been initiated by the BBC Natural History Unit in Bristol to learn more about the elephants prior to filming them for Sir David Attenborough’s new series The Life of Mammals. These dedicated rangers, led by Daniel Namunai, track the elephants with the help of expert tracker David Kiperenge. They have found that there is only one group of elephants, and they follow these animals on a daily basis, recording their position and activities. At the same time, they announce their presence with elephant greeting noises, or ‘rumbles’. It is hoped that this procedure – similar to that adopted by Dian Fossey to habituate gorillas – will soon make it possible for tourists to accompany the rangers and experience the thrill of tracking elephants through the forest, whilst also providing valuable funding for the development and running of the Park.
The BBC Natural History Unit continued funding the team during further filming and Born Free has been providing salaries for the MEEM Team since 2001. In 2002, they provided extra funding for fuel and for the removal of the old fencing, from which wire was being taken and used to make snares. The number of snares in the Park has since declined dramatically. Born Free also provided a TV and video for the Park to use in their education and outreach activities. The Mount Elgon National Park is not on the usual tourist routes, but after featuring in Sir David Attenborough’s The Life of Mammals in December 2002 and the Natural World in October 2003, visitor numbers increased considerably and it is hoped that there will be even more visitors over the coming years and the Park will be able to expand its infrastructure, services and community work. Mount Elgon is home to three tribes, the Bagisu, the Sabiny and the Ogiek people, better known in
38 asante aug – oct 2012
Photo courtesy of
the region under the derogatory ethnic umbrella term Ndorobo. The Bagisu and Sabiny are subsistence farmers and conduct circumcision ceremonies every other year to initiate young men (and in the Sabiny’s case, girls) into adulthood. Traditionally, the Bagisu consider Mt. Elgon to be the embodiment of their founding father ‘Masaba’, and you may hear the mountain called by this name. Local people have long depended on forest produce and have made agreements with the Park to continue to harvest resources such as bamboo poles and bamboo shoots (a local delicacy). The Ogiek used to be hunters and honey gatherers, but have become more sedentary in recent decades, and have partially been moved downward by the Government. Together with the cave elephants and abundance of flora and fauna, the Mount Elgon National Park has a variety of other attractions to tempt the discerning traveller, including its towering cliffs, breathtaking gorges, calderas, bubbling hot springs and jagged
peaks. At the Endebess Bluff there are panoramic views over the region’s escarpments, gorges, mesas, and rivers. Located in the foothills of Mt. Elgon you will find the spectacular cascades of the Sipi Falls, a series of three waterfalls, the main cascade of which plummets from a height of 100 metres and is very popular with climbers and hikers. The Sipi Falls area is particularly famous for its Bagisu Arabica coffee produced and grown locally by farmers. Other attractions include the ancient cave paintings near the trailhead at Budadiri, which depict the presence of cave elephants in the region even in the Neolithic Age. Mt. Elgon has been described as a ‘Mountain of Illusion’, particularly due to the number of hiking parties who lost their way on its slopes in the past and because no explorer could determine its highest point. But the cave elephants of Mount Elgon are no illusion, they are a true wonder of the natural world and a ‘must see’ species for any visitor to Uganda •
Mount Elgon is an extinct shield volcano on the border of Uganda and Kenya, north of the port city of Kisumu and west of Kitale. The mountain ’s slopes support a rich variety of flora and fauna, but it is the world-re nowned cave elephants that are the main draw FoR visitors TO this spectacular mountain.
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destination dar es salaam
Sultans City of the
DAR ES SALAAM by Peter Holthusen.
Photos courtesy of Peter Holthusen
the city merits a visit in its own right as Tanzania’s political and economic hub.
40 asante aug – oct 2012
ny traveller flying into Dar es Salaam’s sprawling Julius Nyerere International Airport today could easily be forgiven for failing to remember that on 20 December 2011, the heaviest rains in 57 years resulted in unprecedented flooding that devastated many areas of the city, causing 13 casualties and left nearly 5,000 people homeless . With a population of almost four million and East Africa’s second-largest port, Dar es Salaam, formerly Mzizima, is the largest city in Tanzania. It is also the country’s richest city and a regionally important economic centre. Yet under its veneer of urban bustle, the city remains a down-to-earth, manageable place, with a
picturesque seaport, a fascinating mixture of African, Arabic and Indian influences with extremely close ties to its Swahili roots. Dar es Salaam was founded in 1862 by Sultan Seyyid Majid of Zanzibar who wanted to move his capital to the small port of Mzizima (Swahili for ‘healthy town’), which was then just one of the many bustling fishing villages along the East African coast on the periphery of the Indian Ocean trade routes. He named it from an Arabic phrase bandar as-salām meaning ‘harbour of peace’. A popular but habitually erroneous translation is ‘haven of peace’ resulting from a mix-up of the Arabic words dar (house) and bandar (harbour). However, soon after the
Sultanâ€™s death in 1870, the development of Dar es Salaam fell into decline and relative anonymity, overshadowed by Bagamoyo, an important trading port to the north and the oldest town in Tanzania. It wasnâ€™t until 1887, when the German East Africa Company established a station there, that Dar es Salaam assumed new significance, first as a way-station for Christian missionaries making their way from Zanzibar to the interior, and then as a seat for the German colonial government, which viewed Dar es Salaamâ€™s protected harbour as a better alternative for steamships than the dhow port in Bagamoyo. The townâ€™s growth was facilitated by its role as the centre of German colonial administration and the main contact point between the agricultural mainland and the world of trade and commerce in the Indian Ocean and the Swahili coast. Further industrial expansion soon followed with the construction of the Central Railway Line in 1907. German East Africa was captured by the British during World War I and from then on was referred to as Tanganyika, under the auspices of first The League of Nations (LON), then the Trusteeship Council of the United Nations. To assist in its own post-war economic recovery effort, Britain maintained compulsory cultivation and enforced settlement policies. Dar es Salaam was retained as the territoryâ€™s administrative and commercial centre. Under British indirect, separate European (e.g. Oyster Bay) and African (e.g. Kariakoo and Ilala) areas developed at a distance from the city centre. Further political developments, including the formation and growth of the Tanganyika African National Union (TANU), led by a young 39-year-old teacher named Julius Nyerere, resulted in Tanganyika attaining independence from colonial rule with jubilant optimism in 1961. Dar es Salaam continued to serve as its capital, but very often against daunting odds.
When Zanzibar erupted in a violent revolution in January 1964 just weeks after achieving independence from Britain, Nyerere skillfully co-opted its potentially destabilizing forces by giving the islandâ€™s politicians a prominent role in a newly proclaimed United Republic of Tanzania, created from the union of Tanganyika with Zanzibar in April 1964. However, in 1973 provisions were made to relocate the capital to Dodoma, a more centrally located city in Tanzaniaâ€™s interior. The relocation process has yet to be completed, and Dar es Salaam remains Tanzaniaâ€™s undisputed political and economic capital, even though the legislature and official seat of government were transferred to Dodoma in 1973. Dar es Salaam is Tanzaniaâ€™s most important city for both business and
government. The city contains unusually high concentrations of trade and other services compared to other parts of the country, which has about 80 percent of its population in rural areas. For example, about one half of Tanzaniaâ€™s manufacturing employment is located in the city despite the fact that Dar holds only 10 percent of Tanzaniaâ€™s population. Located in a massive natural harbour on the Indian Ocean, Dar es Salaam is the hub of the Tanzanian transportation system as all of the countryâ€™s main railways and several highways originate in or near the city. Its status as an administrative and trade centre has put Dar in position to benefit disproportionately from Tanzaniaâ€™s high growth rate since the year 2000, so that
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destination dar es salaam around the waterfront and city centre. In the past 15 years, Dar es Salaam and other Tanzanian cities have experienced a major construction boom, despite a much higher demand for electricity, which is still rationed around the country. With more than 21 stories, The Benjamin William Mkapa Pension Towers on Azikiwe Street is the tallest building in the city and indeed the country. The city centre runs along Samora Avenue from the clock tower to the Askari Monument, which is a memorial to the askari soldiers who fought in the British Carrier Corps in World War I. It is located at the centre of a roundabout between Samora Avenue and Maktaba Street, a place that reportedly also marks the exact centre of downtown Dar, with banks, foreign-exchange bureaus, shops and street vendors. Northwest of Samora Avenue, around India and Jamhuri Streets, is the vibrant Asian quarter, with its warren of narrow streets lined with Indian merchants and traders. On the other side of town, northeast of the Askari Monument, is a quiet area of tree-lined streets with the National Museum & House of Culture, an exciting project which has transformed the old King George V Museum into a modern tribute to African cultural heritage in Tanzania. Proceeding north from here along the coast are first, the upper-middle class area of Upanga and then, after crossing the Selander Bridge, the fast-developing diplomatic and upmarket areas of Oyster Bay and Msasani, with its famous weekend craft market. The city’s only real stretch of sand is at Coco Beach, near Oyster Bay, but better beaches to the north, such as Jangwani Beach, with its selection of swimming pools and two water parks, and the long, white-sand beach south of Kigamboni, around Mjimwema village are only a short drive away and make a relaxing break from the city.
by now its poverty rates are much lower than the rest of the country. Buildings in Dar es Salaam often reflect the city’s colonial past and display a rich mix of architectural styles incorporating Swahili, British, German and Asian traditions. Post World War II modernisation and expansion brought contemporary multi-storied buildings including a hospital complex, a technical institute and a high court. Educational
42 asante aug – oct 2012
facilities comprise the University of Dar es Salaam established in 1961, several excellent libraries and research institutes, and the National Museum & House of Culture. Other historical landmarks include the imposing St Joseph’s Cathedral, the White Father’s Mission House, the Botanical Gardens, The Azania Front Lutheran Church and the old State House, which make for an interesting walking tour
Trips to the nearby islands of the Dar es Salaam Marine Reserve are also a popular day trip from the city and a favourite spot for snorkelling, swimming and sunbathing. Moreover, Bongoyo Island is just a boat ride away from the Msasani Slipway. Although the variety and population of coral and fish species are not as numerous as other sites on Zanzibar, Pemba, and Mafia Island, Bongoyo and the neighbouring island of Mbudya, with its long white beach and resident population of coconut crabs, are well worth a visit. While there aren’t many ‘sights’ in Dar as such, there are numerous craft markets, shops and restaurants to keep most visitors happy. The streets, too, are full of colour and activity, as men weave through traffic on large Chinesemade bicycles, while women clad in brightly hued kangas (printed cotton garments worn by many women throughout East Africa) stand in the shade of government office blocks balancing trays of bananas and mangoes on their heads.
Tanzania Tourist Board
LOCATION: Dar es Salaam is the largest city in
Tanzania and East Africa’s second-largest port.
It is located on the Indian Ocean at 6˚48’ South,
39˚17’ East, in a massive natural harbour, with sandy beaches in some areas to the north and south of
Along the waterfront, colonial-era buildings with their red-tiled roofs jostle for space with sleek, modern high-rises, leading to the vibrant fish market, near Kivukoni Front. Even for those who haven’t fostered an appreciation for seafood, the Dar es Salaam fish market is definitely a place that should be experienced when travelling to Tanzania. Built by the Japanese government as part of an aid programme, it is composed of five open air buildings. One hosts the kitchens where food is prepared for the workers or the more adventurous tourists who visit the place. Another building is used to clean the fish bought off the stands of the adjacent third structure, where the day’s catch is displayed. A fourth building is used for auctioning the fish, while on the other side of the street there is a fifth building where vats of fish are fried throughout the day in boiling oil. It provides an excellent opportunity to try the local food in a safe and friendly environment. Dar es Salaam’s natural, nearly landlocked harbour is the outlet for most of mainland Tanzania’s agricultural and mineral exports and is also a transit port for the Congo River, whose navigable tributary, the Lualaba, can be reached by rail. The Tanzania Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) station connects Dar es Salaam to the neighbouring country of Zambia, while the Central Line Railway runs west from Dar to Kigoma on Lake Tanganyika via Dodoma. Dar es Salaam is, in common with most African cities, more romantic to the imagination than to the senses. The road from the station, which is remote from the city centre, lies through a crowded sprawl of pavement stalls and shacks selling, inter alia, pot plants and mosquito nets at bargain prices. Tanzania is a stable African state, save perhaps for the refugee problems caused by Rwanda’s genocide and the Congolese civil war. There has also been a rise in demand for greater autonomy for the neighbouring coral island of Zanzibar, which lies 100 kilometres across the strait, possibly leading to separation and eventual independence. An increasing number of travellers bypass Dar es Salaam completely, by taking advantage of one of the many international flights into Kilimanjaro International Airport (between Arusha and Moshi) for the more popular safari destinations. Yet the city merits a visit in its own right as Tanzania’s political and economic hub. It’s also an agreeable place to break your travels elsewhere in the country, with an array of top-end hotels, inexpensive restaurants, a lively music scene, night clubs, bars, and well-stocked shops, and of course, Zanzibar is only a short ferry or plane ride away.• Air Uganda flies daily to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
LAND AREA: The city has a total surface area of 1,590 square kilometres.
POPULATION: 41 million (July 2010 estimate)
LANGUAGES: Swahili is the official language, although English is widely spoken. TIME: GMT+3
OFFICIAL CURRENCY: The official currency of
Tanzania is the Tanzania Shilling; however visitors are advised to carry US Dollars.
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: Passports for all visitors must be valid for at least 6 months. Visas for up to 90 Days can be obtained in advance or issued on arrival.
HEALTH: The World Health Organization recommends
that all travellers be covered for diphtheria, tetanus, measles, mumps, rubella, polio and hepatitis B. All visitors must carry their Yellow fever vaccination
cards into Tanzania. Failure to do so, vaccination
will be given before entry into the country and will cost $50. Malaria is a risk throughout the year. RELIGION: Almost all Tanzanians combine the
Christian faith (either Catholic or Protestant) which is the predominant religion representing 45% of
the population, followed by Islam (40%), with their traditional religions.
ELECTRICITY: 240 Volts AC, 50-60 Hz. Plugs may be round or square 3-pin. Adaptors can be very useful. WHEN TO GO: Tanzania has a tropical climate and can be visited during all seasons. The weather is
coolest and driest from late June to September, while October and November can be very pleasant. From
late December until February, temperatures can be
extremely high, but not oppressive. During the rainy
season (March to May), you can save substantially on accommodation costs.
WHAT TO READ: Journey through Tanzania: This
splendid book by the late Mohamed Amin, Duncan Willets and Peter Marshall, is one of the growing range of publications from Camerapix Publishers
International, and is as handsome as the spectacular country it portrays.
Brian Johnston gives some cautionary advice on the etiquette of giving (or receiving) business gifts. The world of international business etiquette is a wonderful and confusing place, and the rules of gift giving are no exception. We may think a well-placed gift promotes goodwill, encourages an ongoing relationship, or demonstrates our thanks, but bestow something inappropriate and it may well be the business relationship that gets recycled along with the present. Consider the American on his first trip to Panama, who thought he was being polite when he offered the company director a bunch of yellow roses, quite unwitting that yellow and purple flowers are for mourning throughout Central America. Across the Pacific in China, flowers of any sort are often associated with funerals and hospitals – giving your host a bunch of white flowers is like wishing they’d drop dead. The only exceptions are peach and plum blossoms, symbols of spring and good luck. Flowers are not the least of perils when it comes to gift giving. In the United States, anti-bribery laws severely restrict the value of gifts, and in fact most American businesspeople wouldn’t expect even a modest present. On the other hand, gift giving is more common in Europe, not so much for its monetary value (which can be negligible) but for the taste and thoughtfulness that go into it. The Swiss have the habit of giving Swiss army knives, which delights most people but would horrify Koreans. In Korea, knives or anything sharp are thought to ‘cut’ your luck, and are therefore
44 asante aug – oct 2012
inappropriate. Wooden gifts don’t go down well in the Middle East, silver fails to impress in Mexico, where silver is abundant and cheap. Do give a Spaniard an item of collectable pottery. A highbrow book or an art print will delight the French. In Europe as a general rule, stick to chocolates or flowers when it comes to minor gifts. Some flowers are also associated with funerals (best avoid chrysanthemums or white lilies) and red roses are usually a token of love, but anything else goes. Many people imagine the easy option in gift giving is food or alcohol. Far from it; you can’t possibly know the recipient’s
allergies or personal tastes, not to mention their cultural sensibilities. Lobster may be a wonderful present for some gourmets, but it would offend Jewish businesspeople, since it isn’t kosher. That old fallback of Western societies – a bottle or two of wine – would hardly be appropriate in a Muslim country. If what you give is fraught enough, the number of items you give can be a positive quagmire of superstition. ‘Good things come in pairs’ according to the Chinese – hence the well-known marriage symbol, double happiness. But when it comes to business in China, no number is more highly valued than eight, since it sounds like the world for ‘wealth’ or ‘prosper’. Eight is a number you will see frequently in your business dealings in China, from telephone numbers to street addresses and bank accounts, and a gift of eight items will impress. Western cultures tend to favour fours, long used as a way of bringing order to the universe: think four seasons, compass points and phases of the moon. This is far from an obsession, but many gifted items also come in fours. Yet four is anathema in Vietnam, Korea, Japan and any Chinese culture because its pronunciation is a homophone for ‘death’. Various numerical
combinations are also to be avoided. Fourteen, for example, sounds like ‘want to die’ in Mandarin or ‘certainly die’ in Cantonese – perhaps not the best page of a business agreement on which to affix everyone’s signatures. So you’ve chosen your gift and got your numbers right, remembering that Italians believe 17 is a doomed number. Next comes the wrapping process, which you might consider relatively minor. Not so in Japan, where wrapping presents is a whole art in itself, making it look six times more expensive than it really is. Russians rarely bother to wrap modest gifts, but will also certainly make the effort for something more expensive. Having worked out what gift to give, the next thorny issue is how you give it. As Frenchmen Pierre Corneille once commented, ‘the manner of giving is worth more than the gift.’ This need not trouble anyone in Europe or North America, where you can simply hand your gift over with a gracious word or two. In many parts of eastern Asia, however, the process is a more ceremonious affair. For a start, you should use both hands to both give and receive a present – or indeed anything else, such as pen or a business card. (Observe the receptionists at your hotel, who are all adept at the doublehanded move when taking your credit card.) However, in Islamic countries and in India you should only offer objects with your right hand. The left hand – much to the dismay of many a left-handed Westerner – is considered unclean, and certainly entirely unsuitable for offering gifts.
Almost everywhere in the world, gift giving is accompanied by a selfdeprecating remark. ‘It isn’t much,’ you might say. ‘It’s just a little token of appreciation.’ But in Hong Kong, China, Korea, and especially in Japan, such diffidence is in another whole league. It is polite to ensure that you belittle your gift as you hand it over, claiming that it is small, cheap and inadequate. Even if you’re giving away a gold Rolex to the company director, you might want to mention that it’s downright ugly, and probably entirely useless, and you can’t imagine why you ever thought of such an unseemly offering in the first place. It may be more difficult than you thought just handing your gift over. In Australia, where gift giving is not the norm, the offer of a gift may result in confusion and slight embarrassment. In Chinese cultures, gifts are often declined a number of times in order not to seem greedy, so polite persistence is the key. No such problem in South America and Europe, where gifts are readily accepted, and generally opened on the spot. In the Middle East, on the other hand, gifts are never opened there and then. And beware that you don’t inadvertently turn your business partner’s favourite possession into a present; if you compliment something admiringly, your partner may insist you accept it as a gift. So what makes the perfect gift, graciously given? Everyone likes a present that shows a bit of thought. There’s absolutely no harm in sounding out a colleague or a secretary regarding the recipient’s personal likes or hobbies, and buying an appropriate present accordingly – such courtesy will always be extremely well received. And of course, at the end of the day, it isn’t the size or expense of the gift that matters, but the size of the heart that gives it. Now that’s good etiquette anywhere•
45 asante aug – oct 2012
The Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant
46 asante aug – oct 2012
n the morning of Sunday, 3 June 2012 it was my good fortune to visit London where a flotilla of over 1,000 boats had mustered on the historic River Thames in preparation for Her Majesty The Queen to take part in the spectacular Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant. Marking 60 years of The Queen’s reign, the Pageant was the highlight of a number of Diamond Jubilee celebrations which took place over the extended Bank Holiday weekend. Up and down the country, neighbours celebrated the Jubilee by taking part in the fourth annual ‘Big Lunch’. With local councils receiving almost 9,500 road closure applications, this year’s event proved to be the biggest and best ever. The idea of mounting a spectacular River Pageant to mark the occasion was put to The Queen in 2010 by the Diamond Jubilee Committee, led by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson’s Cultural office, who came together to plan and organise a celebratory event to honour this historic milestone. Last year the British Government’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport sent letters to the High Commissioners of every Commonwealth country and to the Lord Lieutenants of every county in the UK inviting them to send a vessel to take part in the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant. More than a million people were expected to line the banks of the river to watch the unique spectacle, which was one of the major focal points of celebration during the special Jubilee Bank Holiday weekend. A mix of historic and modern boats took part in the event, from Mississippi paddle
steamers to graceful sailing ships, Viking longboats, kayaks and the famous ‘Little Ships’ of Dunkirk. Each of the participating boats were provided with a specially designed Diamond Jubilee ensign as a lasting souvenir. The organisation of the event was led by Lord Salisbury, the renowned British Conservative politician who lives in one of England’s largest historic houses, Hatfield House in Hertfordshire, once home to Queen Elizabeth I. In 1970, aged 23, he married Hannah Stirling, niece of Lt. Col Sir David Stirling (a co-founder of the SAS) and a descendant of the Lords Lovat, the famous Scottish aristocrats, so he was more than capable of recognising the exacting demands of mounting such a historic spectacle. From the very outset the Pageant was funded entirely by private donations and sponsorships and administered through a specially-created limited company, The Thames Diamond Jubilee Foundation, which is registered as a charity. Lord Salisbury was assisted in his endeavour by Michael Lockett CVO, Chief Executive; and Adrian Evans, Pageant Master. Lord Salisbury said to me at the launch of the initiative in 2011: “We are planning the greatest Thames flotilla for 350 years to mark Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee. I believe that we should recognise her 60 years of selfless public service with an event that can properly express our admiration and gratitude. The Pageant is just that. It seems entirely right, in view of the Queen’s dedication to the Commonwealth idea, that young people from all parts of the Commonwealth should be beneficiaries of such a legacy”. Her Majesty The Queen came to the throne on 6 February 1952 and her Coronation took place on 2 June 1953. She celebrated her
Opposite: Her Majesty The Queen onboard The Spirit of Chartwell. The Queen’s dress and matching coat were designed by Angela Kelly and created from white boucle threaded throughout with silk ribbon and embellished with Swarovski crystals.
47 asante aug â€“ oct 2012 Photo courtesy of Matt Writtle via Peter Holthusen
diAmond jubilee Photo courtesy of Matt Writtle
Silver Jubilee (25 years) in 1977 and her Golden Jubilee (50 years) in 2002. The first British monarch to mark 50 years on the throne in a significant way was King George III. The only other British monarch to celebrate a Diamond Jubilee was Queen Victoria in 1897. There is a rich history of Royalty using the Thames for Royal celebrations in spectacular style including Anne Boleyn’s Coronation in 1533, an extravagant Pageant for King Charles II and Queen Catherine of Braganza in 1662 and a flamboyant musical event held in 1717 by King George I.
route was approximately 11 kilometres (7 miles) long. The full route including the mustering and dispersal areas runs Handel’s Water Music premiered in from Hammersmith to the Old Royal London on 17 July 1717, when King George Naval College at Greenwich and is I requested a concert on the River Thames. approximately 22 kilometres (13 miles) The lavish concert was performed for The long. King on his barge and he is said to have enjoyed it so much that he ordered the The flotilla was scheduled to travel at 50 exhausted musicians to play the suites a speed of approximately 4 knots with three times on the trip. The indefatigable the ebbing tide increasing its speed over King Henry VIII owned two Royal barges ground to 6 knots. To ease the flow of – the Lyon and Greyhound – which served the tides, The Port of London Authority his riverside palaces, and were kept at the decided to close the Thames Barrier Royal Bargehouse, at Lambeth. during the Pageant. Over 100 PLA staff participated in the five working groups The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh they formed, each representing the main took part in a River Progress from vessel groupings (or Squadrons) rowers, Greenwich to Lambeth as part of the Silver the Royal Squadron, historic vessels, Jubilee celebrations in 1977. In the early recreational boats and the Thames evening on the same day a River Pageant passenger boats on 30 of their vessels, involving a flotilla of 140 vessels took running and marshalling the flotilla from place which Her Majesty reviewed from their operational hub at Gravesend in County Hall. Kent. Shortly before I arrived in London participating vessels had already gathered on the Thames between Chiswick and Putney and were scheduled to set off downstream around noon, so I quickly made my way to a suitable vantage point close to the Houses of Parliament. The formal river procession was scheduled to take part between 2pm and 6pm, starting upriver of Battersea Bridge and finishing downriver of Tower Bridge. The majority of the boats mustered between Hammersmith and Battersea and dispersed eastwards from Tower Bridge to West India Docks. The Pageant
48 asante aug – oct 2012
The lead vessel was a floating belfry with a new set of eight church bells which were cast at the famous Whitechapel Bell Foundry ready for the Thames Diamond Jubilee celebrations. The church of St James at Garlickhythe had commissioned the bells which will be installed in their church after the event. The flotilla of man-powered boats, led by The Queen’s beautifully guilded row barge, Gloriana, were the first to leave the start line at Battersea Bridge. This splendid 27 metres (88 foot) boat was the only vessel custom-built for the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant, and
was presented to The Queen as a gift after the celebrations, and resembles the barge used by the Lord Mayor of London in the 1800s. The Royal party departed from Cadogan Pier in Chelsea at approximately 3pm onboard The Spirit of Chartwell, the privatelyowned vessel that was meticulously designed to evoke the timeless grandeur of the 1929 Cote d’Azur Pullman railway carriage complete with artefacts from the original train and great ocean liners of yesteryear, and lovingly converted for Her Majesty into a Royal barge. Despite being dogged by typically English weather of wind and rain, it was one of the largest flotillas ever assembled on the river. Rowed boats and working boats and pleasure vessels of all shapes and sizes were beautifully adorned with streamers and Union Flags, their crews and passengers turned out in their finest attire. The armed forces, fire, police, rescue and other services were all afloat and there was an exuberance of historic boats, wooden launches, steam vessels and other boats of note all jostling for position close to the start line at Battersea Bridge. The flotilla was bolstered with hundreds of passenger boats carrying flag-waving members of the public placed centre stage (or rather mid-river) in the nautical celebration of Her Majesty’s 60 year reign. The spectacle was further enhanced with a variety of music barges and boats spouting geysers. Moreover, there were also a number of specially constructed elements such as the floating belfry, its chiming bells
Above: The Royal barge, The Spirit of Chartwell, carrying Her Majesty The Queen and other members of the Royal Family leads the flotilla during the Diamond Jubilee River Pageant in London. With a red, gold and purple colour scheme, the vessel was converted to echo the richly decorated royal barges of the 17th and 18th centuries.
answered by those from the riverbank churches along the route. With the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games was just six weeks away, the public that lined the riverbanks and bridges gave a rousing reception to the many boats that had travelled from far and wide to represent UK port cities, the Commonwealth countries and other international interests.
Photo courtesy of Peter Holthusen
Below: An estimated one million rain-soaked people lined the streets of London to watch the Queen’s 1,000 boat Diamond Jubilee Pageant weave its way along the course of the River Thames.
In the shadow of The Tower of London, there was even a gun salute as the flotilla passed under Tower Bridge, whose bascules were raised in salute, before the boats made their way to the finish line through a spectacular ‘Avenue of Sail’, a mile-long stretch of river downstream of the bridge where vessels too large to travel with the rest of the flotilla were moored from Friday, 1st June until Monday, 4th June, and made up by a fleet of traditional Thames sailing barges, oyster smacks, square riggers, naval vessels and other impressive ships. This illustrious fleet of vessels were enhanced by an equally impressive number of historic yachts moored in nearby St Katharine Docks with its vibrant Marina, including Sir Francis Chichester’s ‘Gipsy Moth IV’, in which
he became the first man to sail singlehanded around the world in 1966-67, and Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s now legendary 10 metres (32 foot) Bermudan ketch Suhaili. The weather certainly took its toll on The Duke of Edinburgh, for the following day he was admitted to the King Edward VII Hospital in London, just hours ahead of The Diamond Jubilee Concert on Monday night, where he underwent treatment for a bladder infection, but the ever-attentive Prince would have insisted on following the proceedings on television from his hospital bed. Some minor last-minute adjustments marked the absence of The Duke of Edinburgh from The Queen’s side during the final day of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations. At a service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral on Tuesday, 5th June, the monarch cut a rather solitary figure as she processed alone behind The Lord Mayor of London who, in accordance with tradition, carried the pearl sword symbolic of the sovereign’s authority. The red velvet cushioned seat, which Prince Philip has sat in for so many services during Her Majesty’s long reign, was occupied instead by the Prince of Wales. His seat in the Royal car, which
bore The Queen to the morning service, was taken by her lady-in-waiting, Diana Marion, the Lady Farnham. The only reference in the cathedral to his sudden indisposition, as he underwent treatment in hospital, was a hasty addendum to the sermon delivered by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams. To the congregation, which included the Prime Minister, David Cameron, the Archbishop praised The Queen’s dedication. “She has made her public happy and all the signs are that she is herself happy, fulfilled and at home at these encounters”, he said: “The same, of course, can manifestly be said of Prince Philip, and our prayers and thoughts are very much with him this morning”. Shortly after the end of Sunday’s festivities on the Thames, the organisers of The Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant issued a public vote of thanks to the millions of people who braved the weather to line the banks of the river to pay tribute to Her Majesty The Queen – and to watch the 1,000 boat, 11 kilometres (seven-mile) flotilla between Battersea and Tower Bridge. Lord Salisbury, Chairman of The Thames Diamond Jubilee Foundation, said: “We would like to extend our thanks and appreciation to Her Majesty The Queen, the other members of the Royal Family and of course, all those people who braved the elements to come out to enjoy our Pageant”. Thus, in common with the tradition for which London is renowned The Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant celebrated Her Majesty’s 60 years of service by magnificently bringing the Thames to life; making it joyously full with boats, resounding with clanging bells, tooting horns and sounding bosun’s whistles; recalling both its unique Royal heritage and its heyday as a working, bustling river. •
49 asante aug – oct 2012
Feathered Creatures for the Table
Throughout history people have hunted down and eaten most living creatures on the earth and in its waters, but until recent times, they weren’t so lucky with birds, says Patricia Hughes Scott.
e are by nature omnivorous, more like bears than carnivores, eating flesh but also fruits, roots and vegetable matter – and sweetness in the form of honey. White meat, i.e. birds and fish, is probably the best for us, but we also have an innate desire for variety, and change. Early man probably designed traps to catch birds (and nets and spears to catch fish) but it wasn’t really until the invention of the gun, that the feathered creatures became more available to our table. Sadly, voracious appetites made some bird species extinct – the moa of New Zealand; the dodo of Mauritius; the passenger pigeon of north America and the great auk of
50 asante aug – oct 2012
north Atlantic islands - are some of the creatures gone forever. In French cookbooks of only a few decades ago there were always recipes for cooking grives, a little thrush found in central and southern France. They’ve been trapped and eaten almost out of existence. The trapping of thrushes used to be a big operation every year; and one of the methods was to soak grain with brandy, and scatter it. It attracted the birds in thousands and made it easy to catch them as they staggered around, unable to take off. In fact, there is still an expression heard in country districts – soul comme une grive’ which translates as ‘drunk as a thrush’.
In southern Europe – Turkey, Greece, Italy, also South America, small songbirds are still trapped – the tiny beautiful birds are de-feathered but then cooked whole. They thread the little carcasses on thick wires, and cook them over a glowing fire until they’re brown and crisp, then eat the whole thing.
African Birds Here in Africa we have a huge variety of birds. There are nearly 500 different species of birds on the African continent, south of the Sahara, and another nearly 300 species that are either resident in north western Africa or are winter migrants from northern climes. Ornithologists say they number
Above: Thanksgiving turkey. Opposite page: Ostrich meat.
2,000,000,000 or so (give or take a dozen, I imagine!) On this vast continent we have the distinction of hosting the largest bird in the world – the ostrich. Hunted ruthlessly in the latter part of the last century for the feathers of the male, today the ostrich is pretty much left alone in the wild, except for some tribes who hunt their eggs. But now these huge birds are bred on farms, and can become quite tame. The feathers of the male are used as adornment, the duller brown feathers of the female used in domestic dusters; and the meat is sold in restaurants. The fillet is a delicacy in African restaurants and is becoming popular overseas too. Other ways of eating the ostrich’s other parts are being developed. The neck is considered a delicacy, de-feathered, and stuffed with a mixture of the liver and kidneys, cooked, chopped and mixed with dried fruit, breadcrumbs, fat and seasoning, then fried until brown and crunchy. One rather weird exotic creation for a banquet was an ostrich stuffed with a swan, stuffed with a goose, stuffed with a chicken, stuffed with a pigeon, stuffed with a thrush – how do you start to carve that! Seabirds can be tough and unrewarding to eat, as most have a strong flavour of rotting fish; even wild freshwater birds often taste of fish. Most wild birds are now protected anyway, which is as it should be – we need to preserve the delicate balance of our environment – so what else?
Poultry Geese are not very popular in Africa, although there are a few breeders in South Africa who produce this bird for the table, but it is much more popular in Europe. Duck has become a worldwide phenomenon. China was probably responsible for popularising this specimen of poultry and spreading its reputation to the West. Peking duck is known everywhere, and since that bird is not very different from the English Aylesbury duck, English farmers are now exporting planeloads of these birds to Hong Kong! Ducks are gaining popularity in Africa too. Restaurants are learning that a duck has to be bled of its excess fat before roasting. The white Peking brand is popular but also the darker coloured Muscovy duck is considered tasty. Duck eggs are a speciality gaining in popularity. Game birds are also taking happily to domestic breeding (when, strictly speaking, they become poultry). The guinea fowl is one of the most important of these and they are bred on many African farms and smallholdings for food. The tiny quail breeds well in captivity and their small eggs are considered a delicacy. The turkey is fairly new to Africa, but growing fast in popularity. Originating in north America, the English explorer Sir Walter Raleigh introduced it into England in the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1 in the
16th century and it became, in the 20th century, the most popular Christmas feast. Bred now in many African countries, their meat is on sale all the year round, not just at Christmas time. One wonders if some of the other edible birds in the world could be bred in Africa – grouse, pheasant, partridge, widgeon, woodcock, ptarmigan, snipe and so on, so popular in Europe? Others have survived the transition from a cold climate to tropical heat, e.g. chickens. Chickens are now a staple in so many African homes. The Kenyan coast used to be considered too hot for chicken rearing, but Rene Haller, of Bamburi Nature Reserve fame, now considered a world authority on land reclamation, not only discovered how to fish farm tilapia, but also started successful chicken breeding. “I thought to myself, if I was a chicken, what would I want?” he jokes, but his methods of breeding and egg laying worked, and he went on to be successful in this, as all his other projects. Chicken consumption originated in the ancient races of India, but now in the 21st century it is overtaking beef as the principal supplier of animal protein in the human diet worldwide. Kenyans love chicken meat. It’s a rapidly developing business, and the major supplier to the market has a subsidy programme to encourage farmers to raise these birds. With a short maturing time, chickens are a good ‘cash crop’; the meat is beneficial for human consumption, and it tastes good too•
White meat, i.e. birds and fish, is probably the best for us. 51 asante aug – oct 2012
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Valid from 01stDecember December2011 2011 Valid from 01st ENTEBBE NAIROBI Flight schedule effective 16 May 2012. ENTEBBE - NAIROBI DEPARTURE TIME ARRIVAL TIME FREQUENCY DEPARTURE TIME ARRIVAL TIME FREQUENCY ENTEBBE - NAIROBI 6:30 Hrs 07:40 Hrs Mon,Tue ,Wed ,Thur, & Fri DEPARTURE ARRIVAL TIME FREQUENCY 6:30 Hrs TIME 07:40 Hrs Mon,Tue ,Wed ,Thur, & Fri 15:35Hrs ,Wed & Fri 06:40 14:30Hrs Hrs 07:50 Hrs Mon - Tue Fri Tue 14:30Hrs 15:35Hrs ,WedSat & Fri 8:30Hrs 9:40Hrs 16:25Hrs 17:40Hrs Mon - Fri 8:30Hrs 9:40Hrs Sat 12:20Hrs 13:25Hrs Sun 19:10 Hrs 20:25Hrs Mon - Fri 12:20Hrs 13:25Hrs SunSat 16:45Hrs 17:50Hrs 16:50Hrs 18:05Hrs Sat & Sun 16:45Hrs 17:50Hrs Sat Thur, Fri&Sun 09:00 18:45 Hrs 10:15 Hrs Sat & Sun Hrs 19:55Hrs Mon,Tue,Wed. 18:45 Hrs 19:55Hrs Mon,Tue,Wed. 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Haandi’s New Outlets at the Coast Mombasa has two new fast food outlets at the new, ultra-modern City Mall, Nyali. Situated on the junction of Links Road and the main Bamburi Road on the way to Malindi, the new shopping mall is connected to the existing Nakumatt Nyali. Haandi ‘Udupi’ serves a potpourri of Indian bazaar delicacies and Haandi ‘Black Bean serves Chinese food. The reasonably priced pre-plated food by the two outlets will be a welcome addition to the culinary attractions of Mombasa, for locals and visitors alike.
Performance Furnishings Creating Offices that Work! Performance Furnishings is a Ugandan company that sells value. Their office furniture is innovative, functional and designed to meet the rigours of the African market while meeting North American standards of quality. Performance ensures consistency and durability, putting strict quality control measures in place so that they can guarantee a conditional two-year warranty. All Performance products are ergonomically designed to enhance user comfort and productivity, which helps transform any space into an efficient working environment. Many Performance products are also GreenGuard Certified to be environmentally friendly and safe for the workplace, meeting some of the most stringent public health standards in the world. After all, your workstation is going to be your business partner for years to come, so you should make sure it’s a healthy one! Choosing the right furniture can be challenging. Performances’ furniture specialists offer on-site service and space planning to help you design and configure your space. Email email@example.com
NFT Consult are Optimistic NFT Consult specialises in the provision of manpower services, and we view Uganda’s 50th anniversary with pride and optimism. The tumultuous times are long gone and NFT are happy to note that the younger generation have found a more pleasant working climate as business people, artisans, support staff and professionals. The times are looking up with many seeking opportunities for training, further education and apprenticeship as there is more demand for these resources by local, multinationals and international companies, said a company spokesman. The advent of the outsourcing model is especially welcome because of the flexibility accorded to both employers and workers. Employers will only utilize resources as and when needed and workers are in control of their working hours. Training is offered for jobs, careers can be harnessed and – not least – the family’s welfare is taken care of even when we work far from home. NFT Consult are especially optimistic about the future with the opening of borders across East Africa and increased investor interest, notably in the banking, telecommunications, and oil and gas sectors where manpower services mean more knowledge sharing and jobs for Ugandans. We have a lot to celebrate and look forward to after 50 years of independence.
Samsung Galaxy S III Latest News The Samsung Galaxy S III is probably the hottest smartphone found in the market right now. Before its launch in London at the end of May 2012, Samsung had announced that they had already received 9 million pre-orders. Here is a quick look at the highlighted features of the Samsung Galaxy S III 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 1280 x 720 3G, EDGE/GPRS, Wi-Fi with, DLNA support GPS with A-GPS and GLONASS, USB 2.0, Bluetooth 4.0 8MP camera with AF, LED flash, BSI sensor and 1080p HD video recording 1.9MP front facing camera with a resolution of 720p for video chat 16/32/64GB Internal memory, expandable up to 64GB HDMI out
53 asante aug – oct 2012
HEALTHY TRAVELLING These gentle exercises, which you can carry out easily during your flight, will help blood circulation and reduce any tiredness or stiffness that may result from sitting in one place for several hours. Check with your doctor first if you have any health conditions which might be adversely affected by exercise.
Start with both heels on the
Lift leg with knees bent
floor and point feet upward as
while contracting your thigh
high as you can. Then put both
muscles. Alternate legs.
feet flat on the floor. Then lift
Repeat 20 to 30 times for
heels high, keeping the balls of
Other Tips for a Comfortable Flight
For your own comfort try and travel light.
Wear loose clothing and elasticated stockings made of natural fibre.
Increase your normal intake of water and only if need be, drink alcohol but in moderation.
Use moisturising cream to keep your skin from drying out.
Take off shoes in the plane to prevent your feet from swelling up or wear shoes that will cope with expanding ankles.
Avoid heavy meals during the flight.
Short walks once every two hours are excellent for circulation.
Try to touch your toes when waiting in the aisle to stretch your hamstrings.
On arrival at your destination, have a hot shower or a relaxing bath.
On arrival a quick jog, brisk walk, or a vigorous scrub will help stimulate your circulation.
your feet on the floor. Continue cycle in 30-second intervals.
Knee to Chest Bend forward slightly. Clasp hands around the left knee and hug it to your chest. Hold stretch for 15 seconds. Keeping hands around knee, slowly let it down. Alternate legs. Repeat 10 times.
Shoulder Stretch Reach right hand over left shoulder. Place left hand behind right elbow and gently press elbow toward shoulder. Hold stretch for 15 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Overhead Stretch Raise both hands straight up over your head. With one hand, grasp the wrist of the opposite hand and gently pull to one side. Hold stretch for 15 seconds. Repeat on the other side.
Forward Flex With both feet on the floor and stomach held in, slowly bend forward and walk your hands down the front of your legs towards your ankles. Hold the stretch for 15 seconds and slowly sit back up.
Shoulder Roll Hunch shoulders forward, then upward, then backward, then downward, using a gentle, circular motion.
Ankle Circles Lift feet off the floor, draw a circle with the toes, simultaneously moving one foot clockwise and the other foot counterclockwise. Reverse circles. Do each direction for 15 seconds. Repeat if desired.
Start with arms held at a 90-degree angle: elbows down, hands out in front. Raise hands up to chest and back down, alternating hands. Do this exercise in 30-second intervals.
With shoulders relaxed, drop ear to shoulder and gently roll neck forward and to the other side, holding each position about five seconds. Repeat five times.
54 asante aug – oct 2012
TIPS FOR THE TRAVELLER IN UGANDA
Uganda is a compact country, with an area of 236,580 square kilometres – roughly the size of Great Britain.
Uganda has good health services, with some good government and private hospitals and clinics in the major cities. Air rescue services are available.
Although situated on the equator, Uganda’s relatively high altitude tempers the heat, and humidity is generally low. Throughout the year sunshine averages about 6 to 10 hours a day. There are two rainy seasons: the main long rains, which start late in February and end in April, and the short rains, which start in October and run until about the middle of December. The region around Lake Victoria, however, receives rain at almost any time of the year.
Uganda Shilling (UGX). Notes are in denominations of UGX 50,000, 20,000, 10,000, 5,000 and 1,000. Coins are in denominations of UGX 500, 200, 100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1. You can change money at banks and hotels. Although the forex bureaux usually have better exchange rates.
International credit cards are accepted in major hotels and shops.
It is located on the equator, within the eastern plateau region of the African continent and between the eastern and western ridges of the Great Rift Valley. Near the borders several mountain masses stand out strikingly from the plateaux.
Shops and businesses are generally open from 0830 to 1730 hours on weekdays, with a lunch break between 1300 and 1400 hours. Some businesses are open on Saturday, at least until midday. Small, local shops or kiosks on the side of many roads are generally open much later, until about 2130 hours and on weekends and holidays as well; they stock basic food and household items.
2012 1 January 26 January 8 March 6 April 9 April 1 May 3 June 9 June 19 August 9 October 26 October 25 December 26 December
Uganda is blessed with fertile soils that support a wide variety of food and export crops, both annual and perennial. Agriculture is the dominant sector of Uganda’s economy. The major traditional export crops are coffee, cotton, tea, horticulture, tobacco and sugar cane, while groundnuts, maize, beans, sorghum and millet have emerged in recent years as cash crops for the peasant farmers.
English is the official language and is also the medium of instruction in Uganda’s education system, from primary school up to university level. Swahili is also spoken. There are some 30 indigenous languages spoken in the rural areas. The most common of these are Luganda and Luo.
All installations are of British standard and appliances should be fitted with the square, three-pin plugs of British specifications. The voltage is 240 volts, 50 Hz for domestic use. The voltage fluctuates continually, however, and proper surge protectors are advisable for any expensive equipment.
Uganda is three hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Time remains constant throughout the year.
The people are warm, friendly, and full of humour. They are anxious to make friends with visitors and are continually asking guests whether they are comfortable and enjoying themselves. A large number of people speak English.
Uganda is beginning to develop an excellent tourist infrastructure, with first-rate roads and communication facilities. Uganda’s national game, forest and recreational parks are indeed some of the spectacular showpieces Africa has to offer. They do have regulations regarding offthe-road driving, game watching, and so on, which are clearly stated at the entrance gates of parks or on leaflets supplied by the tourist offices. Mountaineering safaris to the Ruwenzori Mountains in the western Rift Valley are now becoming a favourite Ugandan expedition. Similar safaris can also be organised to climb Mount Elgon in the east, sharing the border with Kenya. Hotels There are international-standard hotels in Entebbe, Kampala and Jinja, as well as in many of the smaller towns. Camping, rustic bush camps and guest houses are also available. The Kampala Sheraton, the Serena Kampala, the Grand Imperial, and the Nile Hotel, all in the national’s capital are by the best. There are many other less expensive, but quite nice hotels in the city. Outside Kampala, most towns also have a variety of moderately priced and budget hotels. Banking hours There is a wide range of banks in Uganda, particularly in Kampala. Their hours are generally from 0830 to 1400 hours on weekdays, and Saturdays from 0830 to 1200 hours. Forex bureaux keep longer hours – 0900 to 1700 hours on weekdays and 0900 to 1300 hours on Saturdays. ATMs are available in the larger cities. Communications Telephone, telex, fax and airmail services connect Kampala to all parts of the world. Services are available at the General Post Office and its many branches, as well as in the main hotels. International direct dialling is available and now there are a number of Internet cafes.
New Year’s Day Liberation Day International Women’s Day Good Friday Easter Monday Labour Day Martyrs’ Day National Heroes’ Day Eid al-Fitr (End of Ramadan) Independence Day Eid al-Adha (Feast of the Sacrifice) Christmas Day Boxing Day
Note:The two Muslim holidays, Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha are timed according to local sightings of various phases of the moon and the dates given above are approximate.
Besides personal effects, a visitor may import duty-free spirits (including liquors) or wine up to one litre, perfume and toilet water up to half a litre and 270 grammes of tobacco or 200 cigarettes. Other imported items, not exceeding US$100 may be brought in duty free and without an import licence, provided they are not prohibited or restricted goods, are for personal use, and are not for resale. Note: A special permit is required to export game trophies.
Visitors from areas infected with yellow fever and cholera required certificates on inoculation. All visitors are advised to take an antimalarial prophylactic beginning two weeks before their arrival and continuing for six weeks after their departure. A gamma globulin injection provides some protection against possible infection by hepatitis and is well worth taking.
Visa and immigration requirements
Visa applications may be obtained at Uganda diplomatic missions. Two photographs are required for visas, which are usually issued within 24 hours. Visas are also available at the country’s entry points. Check with the Uganda diplomatic mission in your country if visa is required as some countries are exempted. Taxi services Taxis are immediately available at Entebbe International Airport. They can also be found outside most hotels in Kampala and at most of the country’s major centres. All don’t have meters, so make sure the fare is negotiated in advance. Car rental Several firms operate car hire services in Kampala. Vehicles may be hired with or without driver. For trips outside the city it is possible to hire insured cars appropriate for the trip (a four-wheeldrive vehicle with a driver-translator is recommended). Entebbe International Airport The main point of entry is Entebbe International Airport, about a 30-minute drive south of the capital, Kampala. Although modest, the modern airport does provide automated passenger facilities, currency exchange, postal services, banking facilities, telephoned, duty-free shops, gift shops and a restaurant and bar. Security The same rules apply for Kampala as for almost any city anywhere.Be careful and take the usual precautions to safeguard yourself and your belongings. Do not leave valuables in your car. Walking at night in all major centres is reasonably safe.
55 asante aug – oct 2012
AIR UGANDA CONTACTS AND OFFICES
Kampala Sales Office: Tel: +256 (0) 412 165 555 +256 (0) 312 165 555 Fax: +256 (0) 414 258 267 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Kigali Sales Office: Tel: +250 (0) 252 577 926 +250 (0) 252 577 928 +250 (0) 788 380 926 +250 (0) 722 926 926 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jubilee Insurance Centre,1st Floor, Podium Level, Plot 14 Parliament Avenue, Kampala, Uganda. P. O. Box 36591, Kampala, Uganda.
Office No. 26 UTC (Union Trade Centre) Building, Town Centre Kigali, Rwanda.
Head Office: Tel: +256 (0) 414 258 262/4 +256 (0) 417 717 401 Fax: +256 414 500 932 Email: email@example.com Investment House, Plot 4, Wampewo Avenue, Kololo, P.O.Box 36591, Kampala, Uganda. Entebbe International Airport (Ticketing Office): Tel: +256 (0) 414 321 485 +256 (0) 41771722 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com 2nd Floor, Passenger Terminal Building, Entebbe, Uganda.
Bujumbura Sales Office: Tel: +257 (0) 22277262 Mobile: +257 (0) 76460000 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org 40.Av.du Commerce B.P: 2460 Bujumbura, Burundi. Rue du 18 septembre Galerie la Perle B.P. 2184 Bujumbura - Burundi Tel: +257 222 772 62 Mobile: +257 714 600 00 OR +257 764 600 00
PLEASE NOTE : After working hours: Weekdays (17:45 hrs - 21:00 hrs), Saturday (14:00 hrs - 21:00 hrs) and Sunday (07:30 hrs - 21:00 hrs)
Dar es Salaam Sales Office: Tel: +255 (0) 783 111 983 +255 (0) 222 133 322 Email: email@example.com
Please call our Entebbe ticketing office on Tel: +256 (0) 414 321 485 +256 (0) 417 717 222 for assistance.
Harbour View Towers J-Mall, 1st Floor, Samora Avenue, P.O. Box 22636, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
Nairobi Sales Office: Tel: +254 (0) 20 313 933 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org PS Building Kimathi Street 10th Floor, P.O Box 27781- 00100, Nairobi, Kenya. Mombasa Sales Office: Tel: +254 (0) 20 313 933 or +254 (0) 734 605 203 Email: email@example.com 1st Floor, TSS Towers, Nkrumah Road, Mombasa, Kenya. Moi International Airport (MIA) Sales Office Tel: +254 735 877 289 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Unit 1 Terminal Building, Mombasa, Kenya.
Juba Sales Office: Tel: 0977 153 912 Email: email@example.com Hai Suk Street, (Opp. the Mosque) Juba, Sudan.
SOUTHERN SUDAN Juba
UGANDA Kampala Entebbe
Pemba TANZANIA Dodoma
Zanzibar Dar es Salaam
WI MALA Lilongwe
Answer Austria, Chad, China, Egypt, England, Germany, Greece, India, Iran, Japan, Kenya, Maldives, Mauritius, Seychelles, Tanzania, Uganda
58 asante aug â€“ oct 2012
word square! How many countries can you find in the following words square? Looks for them from left to right, right to left, up and down, and diagonally. Score: 16 very good; 12-15 Good; 8-11 Fair
Add vowels to the following to complete the sentence (5 words)
Clbrtngfftyyrsfndpndnc. Answer Celebrating fifty years of independence.
CROSSWORD PUZZLE & SUDOKU
Clues across 1. Panto provides beer – but not bottled. (2,3)
6. Fasten, but there’s a snag. (5)
9. Reverse. Sounds harmful to heath. (4,3) 10. Box for a body part? (5)
11. Make one to cause a fuss! (5)
12. A dose of flu should produce blushing. (5) 13. Southern alpine mix-up to find dog. (7)
15. A lettuce for corporate businesses perhaps. (3) 17. Jaunty inside super thing. (4)
18. Trod back around 7” record and remove from country. (6)
19. Food shops sound like they belong to Indian city. (5) 20. Fe and queen for laundry worker. (6) 22. Rise out for male parent. (4)
24. One world embraces the unused. (3) 25. Window feature in camera. (7) 26. Paste for glaziers. (5) 27. High flying person? (5)
28. Five in two points for climbers. (5)
29. I go in gun after writer for flightless creature. (7) 30. Surrendered in five notes. (5)
31. Just say yes! (5)
3. It’s said the heart grows fonder if you are this. (6) 4. Tap out name of woman. (3)
Answers across 1. On tap | 6. Hitch | 9. Back out | 10. Chest | 11. Scene | 12. Flush | 13. Spaniel | 15. Cos | 17. Pert | 18. Deport | 19. Delis 20. Ironer | 22. Sire | 24. New | 25. Shutter | 26. Putty | 27. Pilot | 28. Vines | 29. Penguin | 30. Ceded | 31. Agree
2. Oh open out for despair. (2,4)
Answers down 2. No hope | 3. Absent | 4. Pat | 5. Skill | 6. Hussies | 7. Itch | 8. Censor | 12. Fever | 13. Spain | 14 Arrow | 15. Cop it | 16. Steer | 18. Dishy | 19. Deputed | 21. Recipe | 22. String | 23. Revere | 25. Stage | 26. Pope | 28. Via
5. Southern murder has proficiency. (5)
6. Sue hiss out at shameless women. (7) 7. An irritation in the kitchen. (4) 8. He is used to cutting things out. (6)
Place a number from 1 to 9 in
12. This should raise the temperature! (5)
every empty cell so that each
13. Health resort in European country. (5)
row, each column and each 3x3
14 A right argument for weapon. (5)
box contains all the numbers
15. Encounter trouble – from the police? (3,2)
from 1 to 9.
16. Guide the animal. (5) 18. Attractive type of food presentation? (5) 19. Put in deed and assigned authority. (7) 21. Arranged price before easterly direction. (6) 22. Pop star right inside thin cord. (6)
No number can appear twice in a row, column or 3x3 box.
60 asante aug – oct 2012
9 5 3
Do not guess – you can work
it out by a process of elimination.
25. Produce on the platform. (5)
28. By way of Latin thoroughfare. (3)
23. Go backwards (not south) and venerate. (6)
26. Keep open mind to embrace religious leader. (4)
4 6 5
7 8 9
issue number 011 august-october 2012
the inflight magazine of air uganda part of the
f Africa T o l r ur a e n
Dar es Salaam Dar es Salaam
asante issue number 011 august - october 2012
WE ARE THE WINGS OF EAST AFRICA Inside this Issue: Bayimba International WE ARE THE WINGS OF EAST AFRICA Music Festival Direct flights. Different countries. Affordable fares. Direct flights. Different countries. Affordable fares. Fly with us every time. Semliki Land of Plenty Fly with us every time. www.air-uganda.com www.air-uganda.com
The Cave Elephants of Mt. Elgon
Celebrating 50 Years of Sports
Celebrating years of Independence
Land of Plenty The Thames
of Music and Arts
Sings from the Soul
50 Years of Sport
ENTEBBE | NAIROBI | JUBA | DAR ES SALAAM | MOMBASA | KIGALI | BUJUMBURA
your complimentary copy