PAKWACH: The traditional chief of Panyimur in Alur kingdom has appealed to his people and government to come to the rescue of the museum and part of the palace that is being claimed by the rising water level of Lake Albert.
Chief Charles Obidi said the Ker-kwonga Museum containing the major royal regalia of Jonam is already sieged and efforts of relocating it are facing difficulties.
The chief said the palace kingdom officials are incapacitated and in need of external help.
"I have appealed several times for help to locate but no one has responded, the museum and the entire palace are in danger of being swallowed completely”, Obidi said.
He said plans are underway to seek refuge and host the museum at Panyimur primary school but he is still concerned if the government decides to open schools anytime.
The museum that was accredited by the ministry of Tourism and antiquities in 2015 has been attracting learners from higher institutions of learning and tourists who want to learn about the Jonam culture.
Mr John Okumu Jolly, the minister of tourism at Ker-kwonga chiefdom said important regalia like royal drums and valuable documents about some important cultural sites and history about the past kings are in danger.
He said some of the information may be distorted as the palace lacks modern technology of storing them.
The floods have also closed major entry routes into the palace blocking the main gate and also at the verge of submerging the tombs.
"We don't know when exactly this would come to an end, the entire palace is in danger, we are therefore appealing for immediate assistance to bail the chief out of this calamity", he said.
Okumu said there is need to embrace cultural identity and preservation by mobilizing resources and remind the president to fulfill a pledge he made in 2018 during the anniversary ceremony of the Alur kingdom of constructing permanent houses to the chiefdoms.
Kingdom officials are also concerned about a possible outbreak of famine as most food crops like the cassava which is the staple food in the area have all been submerged.
However, Ms Grace Freedom Kwiocwiny, the state minister for Northern Uganda who expressed concern over the development reaffirmed the president's commitment to build the pledged houses but promised to engage the ministry of Tourism for urgent rescue of the museum.