MBARARA – Ms Daphine Naahwera, the marketing Manager of Igongo Cultural Centre has revealed that Biharwe Eclipse Monument will make 500 years in April 2020.
While in an interview with PML Daily, Ms. Naahwera said they are organizing campaigns as starters to the grand fete.
“We are going to do a campaign and create awareness to the public so that the world can be aware of the historical events associated with the Eclipse that happened 500years ago and embrace it as a historical site with rich cultural heritage,” she said.
According to Naahwera, the hill will be able to host campers, dinners, get-togethers, and any event or engagements of any sort within the capacity of the fenced area.
Naahwera added: “It is one of the ways of promoting domestic tourism as well as the international one.”
She said recently a famous mountaineer Mr. Tim Macartney Snape made his way to the hilltop in the company of the Chief Executive Officer Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) and planted trees as a way of kick-starting the journey to the celebrations.
About Biharwe Eclipse Monument
In 1520 AD, a total eclipse of the sun forced the King of Bunyoro, Olimi ? Rwitamahanga, to abandon all the cows, women and slaves he had raided from Rwanda, during the reign of Umwami Ruganzu Ndori.
Omukama Olimi, “The Scourge of Nations”, had led his forces to raid Rwanda after he had finished most cows in Nkore, and was on his way back to his kingdom of Bunyoro, when the eclipse occurred in the late afternoon and darkness covered the whole area.
This terrified the Bunyoro king forcing him and his men to flee, leaving behind their loot which was immediately inherited by the king of Nkore, Ntare ? Nyabugarobwera, amid celebrations.
The cows were immediately named “Empenda ya Munoni” and “Enduga Mwiguru” (cows from heaven).
Some legends say the King of Bunyoro could not go back home empty-handed, so he chose to invade the young Buganda Kingdom under another warrior king Nakibinge.
During a battle in Bulemezi, Kabaka Nakibinge and his distinguished commander, Kibuuka, were killed having been betrayed by his Munyoro concubine. Nakibinge was succeeded by his son Mulondo.
So important were these related events to the people of the entire Great Lakes Region that when historians were researching on the royal lineages of the different kingdoms, the incident that was remembered throughout the whole region was the “Eclipse of Biharwe”.
Using astronomic techniques, space scientists in Europe and America dated it April 17th 1520 AD. That date, and the kings who were alive at that time served as a benchmark to estimate the date of the subsequent kings in the different kingdoms’ lineages.