Naggalabi Buddo Coronation Site, The Coronation Site for Buganda Kings
Naggalabi Buddo Coronation Site is a cultural site where the kings of Buganda Kingdom are crowned to the throne. The Kings (Kabakas) have been inaugurated from this vital place in Buganda for 7 centuries. It is said that Kabaka Kintu, the first king of Buganda executed his brother Bemba from Buddo Naggalabi and affirmed himself the King of Buganda in the 13th century. Since then, all succession ceremonies in Buganda have taken place on Buddo Hill.
The latest coronation of the current King of Buganda Ssabasajja Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II was done at Naggalabi Buddo on 31st July 1993. Thousands of visitors from Buganda, Uganda and beyond attended the huge function . The traditional site is very lovely with a panoramic view of the neighboring country side.
Naggalabi Coronation place is among the most vital cultural sites in Buganda with diverse historic houses that are significant in the coronation of kings in Buganda.
Buddo hill where Naggalabi is found is a village with many elementary, primary, middle and high schools like the famous Kings College Budo, a respected and high-status mixed boarding secondary school that has been attended by most kings of Buganda starting with Sir Daudi Chwa II, the 34th Kabaka of who ruled from 1887 to 1939.
Location and Access to the site
Naggalabi Buddo is located in Busiro County in Wakiso District, nearly 14 kilometres off Kampala-Masaka Highway, a 20-minutes’ drive from Kampala City. A left turn at Nabbingo leads you to Kings College Buddo Secondary School after which you reach the coronation site. The place can also be accessed making a right turn on Kampala-Entebbe Highway about 9 kilometres at Seguku driving like 10 kilomtres to Naggalabi.
It is in this house where the king spends one week and two days following his crowing on the throne. It is a practice that every installed king on the throne spends nine days in Buganda house. And it’s a turbo for anyone in the area is to touch or associate with a woman after the 9 days have elapsed. Those days are called “Enaku Ez’obwerinde” (Days of tension). During those days, is when the king chooses his team of administration (cabinet) and draft a programme for running the kingdom affairs.
Mboneledde Tree is said to be among the oldest trees in Uganda. It is believed that Kabaka Kintu used this tree as his court during his reign. The huge tree with longer branches bending to the ground from above is umbrella-shaped.
It is further narrated that during those court sessions, the accused used to plead for mercy to the king, asserting in Luganda, “Mboneledde,”, meaning “I’m remorseful for wrong doing,”. Henceforth, the tree name was derived from such legal scenarios. Since the days of Kabaka Kintu, the successive kings for over 500 years used the same tree as their law court.
Visitors to Naggalabi Buddo Coronation Site are offered traditional music, storytelling, cultural dance and drama show on request, picnicking site as well as handicraft display for sale.
Other Cultural Sites in Buganda
Besides Naggalabi Buddo, there are other cultural sites in Buganda of traditional importance. These include, Kasubi Tombs, Wamala Tombs and Namugongo Matyrs’ Shrine. Also vitally signficant are the Tanda Pits, Kabaka’s Palace in Mengo, Kabaka’s Lake, Bulange Mengo, Nakayima Tree and Bigo Bya Mugenyi among others. These and many other sites have a strong cultural and traditional usefulness to Buganda Kingdom and Baganda people.