caption: Hon. Mutuuzo, Hon. Kyagulanyi and Hon. Kiwanda at the Uganda International Cultural Tourism Festival at the Uganda Museum
In a bid to boost tourism in the country, Government will soon renovate Uganda Museum which displays and exhibits ethnological, natural-historical and traditional life collections of Uganda's cultural heritage.
According to Godfrey Kiwanda the State Minister for Tourism Wildlife and Antiquities, it will enhance the reflection of diverse cultures in Uganda so that cultural tourism is also embraced.
He said unlike the nature and wildlife tourism, people’s cultures are different depending on part of the country they live in.
“The same animals may live in different parks; however cultures of certain ethnic tribes can only be experienced and witnessed with in specific locations. A tourist will travel to Kenya and view elephants and same applies in Ugandan National Parks. However, one can’t witness the Karamajong culture or Bakiga culture when he is not in Karamoja region or Kabale” Kiwanda said during the opening of the three day Uganda International Cultural Tourism Festival at Uganda Museum on Friday.
The event organized by Uganda Tourism Board draws people from different parts of Uganda, showcasing different products depicting Uganda’s culture such as crafts shoes, bags, bitenge among others. The festival is also being attended by school going children who are taking part in cultural quiz competitions.
Kiwanda said currently Uganda receives 1.5 million tourists per year and has already laid strategies to make it receive about 4 million tourists per year by 2020. He said there is need to have collaborative efforts with the rest of Ugandans so that such big numbers of tourists are achieved.
Gender Minister, Peace Mutuzo, said there is need to conserve and preserve the culture of Ugandans and this can be done through songs that reflect culture and reading books about it.
She said Uganda’s ethnic tribes keep on increasing, pointing out the Ik tribe that emerged in 2015 and was given a constituency.
caption: Minister of State for Youth Hon. Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi and Hon. Kiwanda at one of the cultural displays during the festival
“Let’s use the existing platforms like social media to market our tourism potentials, creative (drama) is another field that should be tapped into” she said.
Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi, commonly known as Bobi Wine, explained the need to empower local artistes to record videos marketing our tourism potentials.
He said a lot of money is spent by government to international media to market its tourism attractions yet a video of a hit song can be played in very many countries.
“Eddy Kenzo shook the world when he won the BET award in 2015. Uganda would have used such opportunity to market its attractions. We have many talented singers but have not been helped by the Government,” he said.
“Currently Uganda’s best-selling product is the Queen of Katwe movie, we need to have more on board,” he said adding that many people got to know Nigeria or India because of movies.
(Source: New Vision)