Mparo Tombs is the final resting ground of King Kabalega II who was exiled in Seychelles by the British empire in 1899, Tito Winyi plus several princes, princesses and royals of Bunyoro-Kitara kingdom. The Bunyoro – Kitara Kingdom was once the most powerful Kingdom in the country. Situated in western Uganda, the kingdom comprised of 5 districts, Masindi district, Hoima district, Kiryandongo district, Kibale district and Buliisa district.
At the tombs, the remains of the kings were just laid out in small mausoleums and not buried. Each of the tomb is covered with a bark-cloth, a cultural cloth made by from cultural trees. Next to the cloth are the royal regalia and other cultural tools and belongings that respective kings used during their rule.
The most immense tomb at Mparo Tombs holds the remains of their greatest king, Omukama Kabalega. Omukama Kabalega is remembered for his exceptional endeavors to protect Bunyoro-Kitara empire from the British rule that was taking over Buganda by then. He is referred to as a brilliant fighter who always made the right decisions. Omukama Kabalega is still admired for his courage, exceptional achievements, and noble qualities. A number of roads, schools and buildings have been named after him.
The most shocking part of the tradition is Omukama Kabalega died in 1923 but still has a living wife and will forever have one. At the time of writing this article, there is an old woman inside the King’s tomb who is his wife. By tradition, when a king in Bunyoro marries a woman, he marries the entire clan which creates a bond between the woman’s clan and his clan implicating if his wife passes on, another woman is chosen from the same line. A weird fact is the bond between the King and his wife’s clan proceeds even after his death. Despite the fact that Omukama Kabalega is wrapped in a bark-cloth, the tradition still had to continue and he there has to be a wife by his side. When this woman dies, a sacred ceremony is carried out in the Kingdom where another woman is chosen from the same lineage to become the new wife to the king. This goes on until the whole clan is no more then they can switch to another clan.
Mparo Tombs is situated about four kilometers from Hoima town on the Hoima – Masindi highway. Book a Uganda safari with us today and have a clear view of Mparo Tombs.