Makerere cultural gala: Acholi students indefinitely suspend their participation

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Acholi Makerere Students Association (Amsa) have expressed their dissatisfaction with the way the institution organises the cultural gala before indefinitely suspending their participation.

According to a communiqué that this website has seen, Amsa members say that the whole ministry responsible for organising the cultural gala is marred by tribalism, a reason they will never participate again.

"Having been “robbed of victory,” we have indefinitely suspended our participation in any gala in Makerere University.
We shall not give up our efforts and endeavors to petition the outcome in which we consider mass apology and nullification of the outcome as an option," reads a communique by Amsa's speaker, Sam Oryem.

According to Oryem, "regardless of clear rules of the game that requires verification of all participants to ensure legitimate Makererians to participate in the gala, Nkoba Zambogo [Baganda] and Basoga Nsetee refused to be verified claiming they are the owners of the ground on which the gala is taking place".

He further states that with the adjudicators well aware of the veiled events of the gala, nothing was done with regard to the earlier complaint that Amsa had brought foward regarding participation of non-Makerere students, which contravenes the rules of the game.

Oryem said: "All the adjudicators were Baganda and giving Nkoba Zambogo and Basogas not only upper hand but ancestral sympathy on the associations, something we were not earlier informed about. There was as well unequal allocation of time for activities for the associations. This was noticed when Nkoba Zambogo were performing cultural dance and the bell was rung after 10 minutes yet the dance was to take place just in 8 minutes."

But the Acholi students are not the first to fall out with the organisers of this event that is meant to be free of bias. The Basoga, who won last year, accuse the organisers of favouritism, citing the fact that the guild president is a Muganda and the cultural minister too from Nkoba Zabogo. Most tribes now have decided to boycott the gala.