Rt. Hon. Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga, the Speaker of Parliament, has urged Government to consider 29th October as a public holiday in remembrance of Bishop James Hannington who was murdered while spreading Christianity.
Speaker Kadaga made this appeal while attending Bishop Hannington’s Day celebrations at Kyando Archdeaconry Headquarters in Mayuge District on Sunday.
“I asked the Church of Uganda and Government to consider 29th October as a public holiday in remembrance of Bishop Hannington and the 45 people who were killed alongside him as martyrs of Uganda,” Kadaga remarked.
He also called on government to increase funding to Busoga tourism sites so that they are developed into modern tourism centres.
The event was organized by the Busoga Diocese, and often receives backup from Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) and Busoga Tourism Initiative.
Born 3 September 1847, Hannington was the reigning Bishop of the Anglican Church in East Africa when he was speared and stoned to death alongside several of his pages at present day Kyando village in Mayuge district.
According to Busoga Diocese Bishop, Rt. Rev. Michael Kyomya, the cold blooded massacres were executed on the orders of the chief of Busoga, Luba, following the orders of the Buganda king, Kabaka Mwanga.
Recorded history has it that Bishop Hannington was in October 1884, dispatched from England by the Anglican Church to head the Eastern Equatorial African headquarters in Buganda but met his death in Mayuge before reaching Buganda.
Sources also report that the cave where the Bishop used to spend his nights and the one where he used to stay during the day plus his preaching stone-stand are to date still intact on the forested hill overlooking the valley.
To the residents who earlier spoke to Local press, it is concerning and surprising that a place considered a cradle of Christianity in Uganda lies forgotten by temporal and Christian leaders, past and present, and more so the Anglican church, since the bishop was an Anglican clergyman.