Inzu Ya Masaaba Releases 2024 Imbalu Festivities Date

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By Our Reporter

Mbale: The highly anticipated Imbalu ceremony, a significant cultural event for the Bamasaba community, has been scheduled for August 3rd, 2024, in Mutoto, Mbale City.

This biennial event, which takes place every even or leap year, will see hundreds of young men gather with circumcision gear at the circumcision site, where they will be flagged off by the cultural leader of the Bamasaba, His Royal Highness Jude Mike Mudoma.

Steven Masiga, the spokesperson for Inzu Yamasaba, confirmed the date and shared details during a briefing on Uganda Broadcasting Corporation Radio (UBC), Butebo Channel.

Masiga announced the attendance of several kings and cultural leaders from across Africa, including representatives from Ghana, Ngoni State, Eswatini, and Mumias in Kenya, all of whom have expressed interest in participating in the ceremony.

The spokesperson encouraged the Bamasaba to prepare thoroughly for the ceremony by planting sufficient and quick-yielding food crops.

He also urged the community to celebrate the Imbalu ceremony within the bounds of the law and to refrain from any unlawful activities, emphasizing that the circumcision period does not grant immunity from committing crimes.

“We expect our people to celebrate the Imbalu peacefully and within permissible laws,” Masiga stated, highlighting the importance of maintaining order and respecting legal boundaries during the festivities.

Mr Masiga noted that the Inzu Yamasaba cultural leader has extended official invitations to President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, President Dr William Ruto of Kenya, and the Speaker of the Kenyan National Parliament Rt. Hon. Moses Wetangula Masika, among others.

The Imbalu ceremony, a cornerstone of Bamasaba cultural heritage, was disrupted in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, following a directive from President Museveni to halt all activities involving public gatherings.

The subsequent ceremony in 2022 saw a tepid response as the Bamasaba had yet to appoint a mandated cultural leader to preside over the event.

However, in August 2023, the Government of Uganda, in line with Article 246 and Section 6 of the Cultural Leaders Act 2011, officially gazetted the current cultural leader, who will now preside over the ceremony for the first time in an official capacity.

The Bamasaba community, united under the Inzu Yamasaba cultural institution, comprises members from Mwambu, Wanale, Mubuya, and Kenya.

The upcoming Imbalu ceremony promises to be a momentous occasion, bringing together cultural leaders, dignitaries, and the Bamasaba community in a celebration of heritage and tradition.

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