A group of change activists led by former Deputy Buganda Kingdom Prime Minister, Apollo Makubuya have petitioned Parliament and other government bodies to have colonial names of streets throughout the country changed.
The petitioners say the continued public display of colonial iconography glorifies persons responsible for the brutalization, subjugation and humiliation of the people of Uganda.
The petitioners; Apollo Makubuya, Rtd. justice James Ogoola, Prof Lwanga Lunyiigo, Hon Stephen Birahwa, Hon Medard Ssegona, Ms Kiiza Kimbugwe and Ms. M. Barlow submitted a petition signed by 5,240 Ugandans to speaker Rebecca Kadaga demanding “decolonization” and renaming of certain streets in Kampala Capital City.
The group also demand for the removal of symbols, monuments and other colonial iconography throughout the country.
“The petitioners strongly believe that the continued public display of colonial iconography which glorifies individuals responsible for the brutalization, subjugation and humiliation of colonized peoples of Uganda is a slap in the face of many brave people that fought for the political independence of Africa from the 15th century until the late 1960s,” the petitioners say.
The petitioners are encouraged by both the strong and determined movement in many parts of the world especially the US and UK to challenge an order that has been advantaged by racist systems built on the black slavery, colonialism and racism -the petition highlights.
The group argues that it is doubly painful for others that continue to fight for the socio-economic independence of the African continent from neo-colonialism.
“We asked the Speaker and the Parliament of Uganda, a body that has the power to make laws for peace, order, good governance and as the protector of the Constitution, to take urgent measures to audit all such names, symbols and installations and to help discard the ones that are undesirable or detestable” Makubuya said.
“We also asked government to take urgent measures to remove offending names and colonial symbols and to historify them in museums. We asked for a change in Uganda’s curriculum on history; to change narratives that glorify certain colonial actors and as well as to increase support to researchers and publishers on these important matters.” he added.
The speaker appreciated the gravity of the issue presented by the petitioners and promised to take quick action.