Saturday, April 21, 2018
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The Vanuma came from Democratic Republic of Congo in the year 1992 and by then Congo was under the rule of “Bajungu Balelege” (Belgians). There were no any other rulers separately from the Belgians and this government of the Belgians within D.R. Congo setup a law which stated that all local people where to stay in the same vicinity of the environment (Milongomoya) and whenever one tried to go further he would be forced back or killed. This government forced the local people who stayed in the villages of Batongo, Tondori, Murangu and Mugwanga to go and stay in a place that is known as Banjingi in the zone of the Chabbhi people but the people (Vanuma) from the above named village failed to with stand the weather conditions of Banjingi as it was so icy. For this fact, the people fell ill of Malaria.

Malaria claimed lives of many Vanuma and a few who survived resisted against the Belgians because of amplified laws and the unfriendly weather conditions. There was a law by which whenever the leader of the Belgians was to visit the villages, some local people would be forced to go and carry him, moving him wherever he wanted to travel. This law hurt the Vanuma but whoever snubbed to do so would be imprisoned for a month and he would be beaten 12 strokes for 2 times a day. This would be done using “Omunuwa gwe Nsere” (a hard slippery stick).

The Belgians setup a law in which a Vanuma woman would be forced to clear and dig a land of over 12 acres. Whoever would fail or reject would be beaten 12 strokes twice a day (morning and evening). Whenever a prisoner would be found health and strong, he would be moved out of jail and be taken to Belgium, fortunately his relatives would be told so. This did not happen to the Vanuma only even to local people in D.R.Congo.

The above situations would not be withstood by the Vanuma and thus caused there migration into Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania and Kenya. It said that two men named Imuddiyo Mumengu and Aungaama Muvagaani are the ones who gathered the few Vanuma who stayed in Batongo, Tondori, Malangu and Mugwanya villages and held up a meeting in Batongo. Through the meeting they agreed to develop the art of making boots from “Mbata” (Mvule tree). They all worked together to come to accomplishment of their agreement. This took them over 2 months and after the boots were ready, they all gathered together and crossed river Lamia to Bombolo.

At Bombolo they an illness of Bangote /Mpungira (sleeping sickness), some died and others escaped to Butoogho, a place found in Uganda near the Uganda-Congo border. Others went to Bubomboli, Nsimba, Bundibhege, Mbango, Kanyamwirima, Buhundu 2 and other continued to Sempaya-Burondo, Ngamba, Ntandi, Ntotoro and Mantoroba.

Others went to Toro to reside and work from there as laborers in the tea plantations and others found when the Old Toro-Bwamba road was not yet completed and so they worked as laborers carrying stones and doing so on. The other Ugandan people feared to split rocks which the Vanuma people did and they were called the strong Congolese.

In the due course of road constructions, they reached a place called Sempaya Mungu Mukubwa they stayed. This place was named after Ndegge Lucky Dube in year 1939. Here, they spent 40 years, its when the whites came back to register laborers who would work to move the road up to Bundibugyo hospital.

After 40 years, the Vanuma started splitting and moved to several places this was because there was no restrictions like it was in D.R .Congo. to wherever they went they meet Bwamba clans and adopted their leadership system and therefore they also developed the idea of having “Omukwati Wenkoni” clan leader as it was in Bwamba traditions.

But Marriage in the Vanuma was within themselves although it was by exchange, a woman would be exchanged by another woman from a different family. In Bwamba they married and bore children, grandchildren, families grew and the clan grew too.
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