Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has warned people living around Mount Rwenzori against degrading the water catchments, saying this would cause a disaster.
Mr Museveni statement was in response to the Rwenzururu Kingdom Prime Minister, Mr Constantine Bwambale, who last week requested the government to allow the kingdom subjects free access to the cultural sites in the Rwenzori Mountains.
Mr Bwambale said the kingdom has proposals to develop the cultural sites and wants the government to grant them permission to visit any time.
“Some of our cultural sites are in Mount Rwenzori National Park. We have to seek permission from Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) to access them. We request the government to remove these conditions so that we access them without interference,” Bwambale said.
Museveni said, “The forest on Mount Rwenzori is very crucial, all these rivers are from that forest, so you should understand this and know that the forest is our mother not only for Rwenzori region but for other parts of the country”.
One of the cultural sites in the park is the burial ground of the father of King Charles Mumbere, the Late Isaya Mukirania who was buried in Bulembe Hills, Ihandiro Sub-county in Kasese District on September 2, 1966.
Every September 2, hundreds of Banyarwenzururu climb to Bulembe to commemorate the death of their first King, but with authority from Uganda wildlife authority (UWA).
The tomb has been earmarked by UWA as a tourism site and monument.
The president warned residents not to temper with the forest cover or risk floods.