ARUA. Uganda’s ministry of Tourism, wild life and Antiquities and Uganda Broadcasting Corporation have unveiled the unseen archives of images for the fallen president of Uganda, Idi Amin Dada.
This comes at a time when the public has continually demanded for a Uganda based story telling about Idi Amin and other presidents of Uganda.
This is because majority of the stories have mostly been told by foreigners and deemed inaccurate.
With the help of professors from University of Michigan in the United States (US) and the University of Western Australia Dr Derek Peterson and Dr Richard Vokes respectively, the ministry of Tourism was able to get photos of Amin and Obote from the analogue archives of Uganda Broadcasting Corporation (UBC) where the unseen photos of Amin were got.
“The main idea is that the images have not been seen for long amidst public demand in memory of President Idi Amin. This is because of the story mainly being told by foreigners as we have not shown the Ugandan story”, Principal conservator museums from ministry of tourism, wild life and Antiquities, Mr Nelson Abiti said during the first day of exhibition on Friday in Arua town.
Abiti disclosed that the exhibition is a basis for development of a West Nile regional Museum to be in Arua where history of Idi Amin and cultures of West Nile will be displayed.
He said the Museum which will have a component of five-star Hotel will be ready by 2021 if processes for land acquisition are done in time.
Abiti noted that this is a move to promote tourism in West Nile region, which will also generate revenue to local governments and create employment and investment opportunities for the people of Uganda.
To that effect, Arua district Vice Chairman, Mr Boniface Alioni made an assurance that Arua district will avail land in Giligili to ministry of Tourism for establishment of the museum, which will also act as a learning centre through crafts and art skills for the young people.
The head of Archives and Library at UBC, Mr Dean Kibirige said photos of Amin and other Ugandan leaders have been stored at the Broadcast house in Kampala, which have never been published because they were in analogue Negative forms.
The officials said they have mainly focused on President Idi Amin because he is a special subject in the international scene in regard to what happened during his regime, one thing many people are interested in knowing.
While launching the exhibition at Social center in Arua town, first deputy prime minister Gen Moses Ali who also served in Amin’s administration called upon the locals, especially the youth to embrace the exhibition so that they are able to learn more about Uganda’s history.
He said it is worth to name roads in Kampala in memory of past presidents of Uganda like Amin.
Citing the fallen Ugandan footballer, late Miria Adoa from Maracha district and the only Ugandan player in 1954 who scored a goal for Uganda in a match with TottenHam Hot Spurs, Arua Resident district commissioner, Mr Nahori Oya said West Nile has rich history based on relevance of its people in development of Uganda who must be remembered in the country’s history.
He pledged to support the upcoming museum with Lugbara calendar that the Lugbara people used for social and economic activities.
Professor of History and African studies from University of Michigan, Dr Derek Peterson who has written books about Idi Amin and Uganda said it is very important to display, digitize and organize Uganda’s historical heritage which in the past has been complicated and exciting so that Ugandans are able to benefit from it.