Nestled on the Naggalabi-Buddo Hill is a significant historical and cultural Site to Buganda Kingdom, located just a stone throw away (approximately 30 minutes drive from Kampala City Center. This breathtaking Site is the place where the Kings (Kabakas) of Buganda Kingdom have always been enthroned for the past 8 centuries but was established back in the 14th Century.
For the last 800 years/8 Centuries, this wonderful Buganda Kingdom Coronation Site established its current status after Bemba Musota was murdered by Kintu, after which he declared himself the King/Kabaka of Buganda Kingdom. It is believed that former princes-Kintu and Bemba fought for Kingship from Buddo hilltop until the former won and declared that all the Kings of Buganda be crowned from Naggalabi. This Site is currently the only renowned Coronation Site in Uganda and the reigning King of Buganda-Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II was also enthroned/crowned at the site on the 31st July 1993 and thousands of guests-both local and foreign attended the unforgettable ceremony. No one can become the King of Buganda Kingdom without being subjected to the rituals at the Naggalabi-Buddo Coronation site. Currently, 6 Kabakas (Kings) of Buganda Kingdom from Kabaka Chwa have gone through the same rituals of coronation at the Site.
Tourists visiting this Coronation Site while on Cultural safari are rewarded with an invigorating traditional experience that involves touring the Coronation ground, spotting the hill that is meant to be the spot where Bemba fell following his spearing by Kintu. You will also see the Buganda house in which the King Stays for 9 days after the date of his coronation and also spot the other traditional houses that have an importance on the King’s Coronation in addition to Mbonelede-the Old tree that was used utilized several years as a traditional court during the time of the pre-colonial Buganda Kingdom (Kintu’s time).
The Buganda House
After the crowned Prince is enthroned to be a King, he spends nine days in this house. This house is around half a kilometer away. No one in the area is permitted to touch a woman before the King completes the nine days and the period is known as “Enaku Ezobwerinde”-meaning the days of tension. While on the nine days, the Kabaka chooses his Cabinet and strategizes on how to manage the affairs of the Kingdom.
Mbonelede Tree is believed to be one of the oldest trees in Buganda Kingdom and the Country in general. It is believed that during Kintu’s rule, he used it as a Court. This ancient Tree is large and has long branches that bend to the ground from the top in an Umbrella-shape.
During Court sessions, suspects pleaded for mercy by saying “Mbonelede” meaning “I have learnt my lessons” hence the tree was named after the phrase. For the past five centuries, subsequent Kings used the tree as their Court.
Other interesting things provided at the Coronation Site include Traditional music, dance and Drama (MDD) performances done on your request, handcrafts displays and picnics among others.
How to Reach the Naggalabi-Buddo Coronation Site
This site is located within Busiro County, approximately 11 kilometers (7 miles drive), 20 minutes drive from Kampala City Center through the exhilarating Kyengera Trading Center along Kampala-Masaka Road also within Buganda Kingdom. The moment you reach Kyengera Trading Center, turn off from the main road at Nakasozi and dive another 2 kilometers along a murram road to the Royal Site. Kings College Buddo Secondary School is one of the most known schools near the site.
In conclusion, the Naggalabi-Buddo Coronation Site is one of the significant sites worth visiting while on a Ugandan Cultural safari. This site is where the Kings of Buganda are crowned from.