The Nvuma Clan

Nvuma Seed
The Nvuma is a seed of an underwater plant called Omuvuma, that is native to Lake Victoria.

The following material has been translated by William Sebudde Kaggwa, from an account supplied by his father, Seruwagi Sekabira Salongo, of Nateete. "Sebudde Kaggwa ava mu Luggya lwa Ggita Ziryawulawo, mu Lunyiriri lwa Biralo, mu Mutuba gwa Senkuzimule, mu Siga lya Ggita e Nansangwa, mu Kyaddondo. Ye muzzukulu w'Omutaka Walugumba, azaalwa Omutaka Mugambwa, Kyaddondo IV"

Katinvuma Akabbiro (Minor Totem): Katinvuma (a creeper)

Omubala (Clan Motto): Mpaawo adduka (okulwana) aliddayo e Kyaddondo (Whoever, among the clan, does not defend the Head of the Clan shall never return to Kyaddondo)

Ow'Akasolya (Head of Clan): Kyaddondo

Obutaka (Clan Seat): Kyaddondo, Kawempe Hill, Kyaddondo County

The Head of the Clan is hereditary, and is chosen from among the direct descendants of Kyaddondo Kigembe. The descendants belong to four lineages (Emituba gya Kasolya) namely 1) Kabinuli of Kiwumu, Kyaggwe, 2) Simujjanemulya, of Kawule Kamukongo, Buddu, 3) Mukina, of Kabaga, Kyaddondo, and 4) Kibanga/Muzigo of Lugaaga, Kibibi, Kyaddondo.

There are ten major Clan Elders (Abataka Ab'amasiga) directly under Kyaddondo:

1. Walugumba of Ttomi Sebbajjo in Kyaddondo County
2. Kasirye of Naggyo in Kyaddondo County
3. Ggita of Nansangwa in Kyaddondo County
4. Ssekaggya of Bbumbu in Kyaddondo County
5. Kasirivu of Nangabo in Kyaddondo County
6. Ggugu Sekasiko of Bubembe in Ssese Islands
7. Sendege of Bugambo, Bukasa in Ssese Islands
8. Mufumuula of Nyimu in Kyaggwe County
9. Kibondwe of Bulondo in Buvuma Islands
10. Banoba of Buwe in Kyaggwe County
Except for the last one, the Clan Elders were instituted (basimbirwa Emituba) by Kyaddondo Mugambwa, from among his sons and grandsons, as we shall see later.

There are many ritual duties of the Nvuma clan at the Kabaka's palace, such as:
1) custodianship of the forest, known as Lugo, at Buswa, from which comes the "Ddamula", originally known as "Mbagambira" the staff of office for the Katikkiro of Buganda, the staff is made of the Nzira tree;
2) custodianship of shrines such as the gods Mukasa, Wannema (Kazooba), Wamala, and Lumansi;
3) custodianship of the canoe Nakakweya, at Bukweya for crossing the Nile between Buganda and Busoga since the reign of King Muteesa I;
4) tending Kabaka's cattle Nakawombe and Kalongo; and
5) Sabagabo at Kabaka's brewery (Senero).


Origin of Nvuma Clan

The Nvuma Clan was started by the first Kyaddondo who came to Buganda with the first Kabaka Kato Kintu. Kyaddondo came from Bubembe in the Ssese Islands and joined forces with Kato Kintu in a major battle at Mangira in Kyaggwe, against Bbemba of Buddo. As a reward Kyaddondo was made Sabaddu of Buganda.

It is said that one day when Kyaddondo was travelling in a canoe between the Islands of Bubembe and Funve, Omutaka Kyaddondo was holding a Nvuma seed which slipped from his grasp and fell into the water and sank to the bottom. His children as well and others in his entourage tried very hard to search for the Nvuma seed but all was in vain. In desperation, Kyaddondo ordered that the Nvuma seed should be searched for until it is recovered from the water. From then on Kyaddondo announced that he and all his descendants will henceforth take the Nvuma as the Clan Totem. Because it took so many years before the Nvuma was sighted again, this is the origin of the Baganda saying "Ogutateganya teguzza Nvuma" (Without hard work there is no reward). As my father puts it, the Nvuma seed grows on a plant called Omuvuma just as an olive grows on an olive tree (the Luganda example is empafu growing on omuwafu). The muvuma grows underwater and when the Nvuma is ripe it breaks off just as the mpafu drops to the ground. It is already understood that the Nvuma seed comes from a muvuma plant that is found in Lake Victoria. The challenge now is to use botanical methodology to scientifically describe the lifecycle of the Muvuma. As my father puts it, we have to understand it in the same way as we understand that empindi grows on the Ggobe or the nsujju (pumpkin) on the kiryo.

The descendants do not know why Kyaddondo himself chose akatinvuma to be the minor totem (akabbiro) of Nvuma. The katinvuma grows on land. It is a creeper that is extensively used in Baganda medicine for newborn babies and the infirm.


Ab'Envuma in the History of Buganda

The Nvuma clan have featured in the history of Buganda during several reigns.

Kabinuli, Katikkiro of Kabaka Kyabaggu, was one of the first men who attempted to build a permanent bridge across the River Nile at Jinja (using Nkoma). This endeavour having failed, Kabinuli advised his Kabaka to unite Buganda and Busoga "tunone ettaka e Buganda tuliyiwe e Busoga n'ery'e Busoga e Buganda. Olwo tunaaba tusse omukago gwa mawanga gombi." This request was fulfilled when soil from Busoga was placed at Mukono in Kyaggwe, a place that is now known as "Takajjunge" (literally, 'joined soils'). The union between Buganda and Busoga endures to this day.

Philip Seruwagi-Namukadde was the first envoy of Buganda to Queen Victoria's England. He went to England in 1879 as the first African diplomat from East and Central Africa at Queen Victoria's Palace. He died on 11 Novemeber 1911.

Apolo Kasirye Kivebulaya Canon of the Church of Uganda was a missionary in Congo Mboga (present Zaire) where he preached and baptised in the forests to the Bambuti. He died on 30 th May, 1933 and was buried in his church of Mboga on 31st May, 1933.

During the reign of Kabaka Juuko around 1680 A.D., Nalunga, daughter of Semalulu, in the line (Omutuba) of Nakabalira, of Nabutitti, was one of the most beautiful girls of the time (comparable to a Miss Universe in the eyes of Baganda of that time). This resulted in the unimaginable in those days to happen. A reigning monarch personally travelled to Nabutitti, to court and marry the beauty, Nalunga. In those days the Kabaka would not leave his palace just to court a lady. "Ku mirembe egyo nga Kabaka tava mu Lubirirwe kugenda kwogereza mukazi." It is said that he travelled at night to hide the fact. Alas, while there, he lost track of time so that daybreak found him outside his palace, and to this day that place has been known as Makerere (where the day dawned on the Kabaka).

The Kabaka married Nalunga whom he loved most dearly among all his wives. This lead to the saying among the Baganda "Ontuuse, Nalunga yatuuka Jjuuko." Nalunga also tried to do her best to endear herself to the king, going as far as mashing yams for his dinner table. This was not normally done among the Baganda which led to the saying "Nkole mpoomye, Nalunga yagoya amayuuni".


Some names of the Nvuma Clan

Males

Mugambwa, Sendagire, Walugumba, Sedyabane, Bukulu Sekasiko, Ggita, Sekaggo, Kasirye, Kaggo, Kabenge, Mankumba, Kagali, Sekimette, Sekaggya, Sebudde, Seruwagi, Kagoma, Kasirivu, Lugolobi, Kabembula, Kabinuli, Sebalijja, Semalulu, Semusu, Kavuma

Females

Nalunga, Naggita, Nakasi, Nabasirye, Nankanja, Mbiggidde, Nakkomo, Naziriwo, Nambwaayo, Nanvuma, Nangabane, Nabubi, Nakaggya, Zabali, Mbekeka, Nantaba


Chronology of the Kyaddondoship since Kato Kintu's reign

Below is the chronology (ensikirano) of the Kyaddondoship from the Kasolya of the Nvuma Clan, starting with the reign of Kabaka Kato Kintu the Kyaddondoship has not been broken.

1. Kyaddondo I; who came with Kato Kintu. He was Sabaddu of Buganda.
2. Kyaddondo II; named Kagoma - the son of Kyaddondo I.
3. Kyaddondo III; named Lwomwa - the son of Kyaddondo Kagoma.
4. Kyaddondo IV; named Mugambwa - the son of Kyaddondo Lwomwa. .
During the leadership of Kyaddondo Mugambwa , when the Nvuma Clan had expanded significantly, the Mituba in the Clan were started, which later became Masiga. The following account relates the establishment of the Clan Elders of the Nvuma Clan. They all started out with Mituba, which later became Amasiga.

This is how the Clan Elders were established in the Nvuma Clan. Most of these, as we have seen were instituted by Kyaddondo Mugamba, during the reigns of Kabaka Kiggala to Kayima.

5. Kyaddondo V; named Kigembe - the son of Kyaddondo Mugambwa, as we have seen above. He was leader of the Clan during the reign of Kabaka Kayima. He had four sons: Kyanda, Simujjanemulya, Mukina, and Kibanga. It is from their lineages (emituba gya Kasolya) that the Kyaddondo is chosen.
6. Kyaddondo VI; named Kyanda I - the son of Kyaddondo Kigembe.
7. Kyaddondo VII; named Kasirye - son of Kyaddondo Kyanda I.
8. Kyaddondo VIII; named Kyanda II - son of Kyaddondo Kasirye, was installed during the reign of Kabaka Mwanga I.
9. Kyaddondo IX; named Kasirye II - son of Kyaddondo Kyanda II, was installed during the reign of Kabaka Namugala.
10. Kyaddondo X; named Naggenda - son of Kyaddondo Kasirye II, was installed during the reign of Kabaka Mawanda. His son Kabinuli was Katikkiro to Kabaka Kyabaggu. He formalised the lineages (emituba egya Kasolya) in the following order 1) Kigembe-Kabinuli from where Kigembe and Kyaddondo the first search for a suitable successor to Kyaddondo; 2) Simujjanemulya at Kawule Kamukongo in Buddu, where they were exiled during the reign of Kabaka Mutesa (I); 3) Mukina at Kabaga in Kyaddondo and 4) Kibanga/Muzigo originating from Omutaka Kibanga the last born of Kyaddondo Kigembe, who is the father of Muzigo of Lugaaga, Kibibi, in Kyaddondo.
11. Kyaddondo XI; named Munyoozi - son of Kyaddondo Naggenda, was installed during the reign of Kabaka Suuna II. Kyaddondo Munyonyi did not bear a son. The son of his brother Lule Walulenga, called Saulo Mayanja Dogoto was his heir.
12. Kyaddondo XII; named Saulo Mayanja Dogoto - son of Lule Walulenga (brother of Kyaddondo Munyoozi), was installed during the reign of Kabaka Muteesa I in 1860. Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto died on 19-9-1940. Sadly, his heir, Yowana Kavuma, forsook the Nvuma Clan and joined the Nkima (Monkey) Clan!! The then Katikkiro (Chief Administrator) of Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto, Omutaka Yokana Sendagire, took over the custodianship of Kyaddondoship until a replacement could be found. Unfortunately, Yokana Sendagire tried to hang on to the leadership. This led to him being sued and the judgement of Sabasajja Ssabataka Muteesa II was delivered on 29-7-1959. The judgement of Ssabataka reiterated that in the Nvuma Clan, there is Akasolya (lineage) originating from Kigembe at Kyaddondo, Kawempe in Kyaddondo (as we saw above he was Kyaddondo VI), from which comes those who head the Clan (mu Kika kye Nvuma mulimu Akasolya omuva abalya obwa Kyaddondo). They do not simply elect anyone in the Clan (tebamala galonda bulonzi muntu wa Kika).
13. Kyaddondo XIII; named Yozefu Semboozi Kabenge - son of Yowana Kasirye, who was the son of Masaaka Nkoola, son of Lule Walulenga (whom we saw above). He was installed during the reign of Kabaka Muteesa II, in 1960. He died on 23-01-1995.
14. Currently (February 1996) there is an Acting Kyaddondo who belongs to the Kasolya of the Nvuma Clan. The Katikkiro is Yakobo Kiwanuka K. Mankumba, who was also the Katikkiro of Kyaddondo Yozefu Semboozi Kabenge.

There is a pending suit at the Kabaka's Court. The Head of the Clan (Omukulu wa Kasolya), Omutaka Kigembe sued Elder (ow'e Siga) Kasirye at Naggyo for colluding with his supporters in the Clan by calling himself, and allowing himself to be addressed as Kyaddondo, Head of the Nvuma Clan, whereas he does not belong to the Kasolya lineage, but is merely a Major Clan Elder (wa Siga)


The Katikkiros of Kyaddondo

The Katikkiro to Kyaddondo has been a formal position of leadership in the Nvuma Clan from time to time, starting with the first Katikkiro who was the elder brother to the infant Kyaddondo Kigembe.

1. Omutaka Walugumba, who also responsible for the upbringing (Omukuza) to Kyaddondo (V) Kigembe.
2. Omutaka Ggita Mankumba to Kyaddondo Kigembe
3. Omutaka Sekaggya at Bbumba to Kyaddondo Kigembe
4. Omutaka Kagali I at Lukole to Kyaddondo Kigembe
5. Omutaka Kavuma at Lukole to Kyaddondo (VI) Kyanda I
6. Omutaka Kagali II at Lukole to Kyaddondo (VII) Kasirye I
7. Omutaka Kabinuli at Kiwumu to Kyaddondo (X) Naggenda
8. Omutaka Kaduwamala at Nampunge to Kyaddondo (XI) Munyoozi
9. Omutaka Sebudde I to Kyaddondo (XI) Munyoozi
10. Omutaka Lwanga Tabalamule who also responsible for the upbring of Kyaddondo (XII) Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
11. Omutaka Segaluma to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
12. Omutaka Bakubye Lusundo to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
13. Omutaka Kibikka Kasirye to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
14. Omutaka Isa Kasirye to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
15. Omutaka Sebudde II to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
16. Omutaka Senkeezi Lusundo to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
17. Omutaka Lugunju Kabwege to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
18. Omutaka Kitentegere to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
19. Omutaka Nasanael Bulwa to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
20. Omutaka Antonio Kasirye Omuwambya to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
21. Omutaka Semei Sebaggala to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
22. Omutaka Mikael Luzungana Omulwanyi to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
23. Omutaka Yokana K.T. Sendagire to Kyaddondo Saulo Mayanja Dogoto
24. Omutaka Yakobo K. Kiwanuka Mankumba to Kyaddondo (XIII) Yozefu Semboozi Kabenge. This is the current Katikkiro of the Nvuma Clan in association with the Acting Kyaddondo since the passing away of Kyaddondo Yozefu Semboozi Kabenge on 23-01-1995.


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