Tooro Kingdom : The pearl of Africa isn’t only rich in physical features but also the diverse culture makes it a destination for any tourist. Uganda is home to over 6 different ethnic groups with 56 languages spoken in the entire country. In this article, we focus on the Batooro of the Tooro kingdom. Found in the present day districts of western Uganda with the king’s palace in Fort Portal. Fort portal is also famously known as a tourism city in Uganda. It is found in Kabarole District.
It’s believed the kingdom was part of the great Bunyoro Kitara empire. The Bunyoro kitara Kingdom was started by isingoma much rukiidi, it was first a chwezi dynasty it was a strong kingdom but with time, there were misunderstandings till 1830 when the Amukamara olimi 1, the eldest son of Amukamara limit 111 founded Tooro kingdom, his own independent kingdom but again in 1876 , the Bunyoro kitara Kingdom took it back until 1891, when it got its independence again, the batooro were the natives of Tooro kingdom.
They had a monarch ,their government that was abolished by the government in 1967 by Milton Obote but fortunately for them, it was restated in 1993 by Museveni ,rules that govern them, being a Bantu kingdom due to it’s location, interlucustrine region located in Fort Portal with Rutooro as it’s the official language and ethnic groups consisting of the Batooro, Bakonzo, Bamba, they are almost similar to the Banyoro, with some same norms, almost speak the same language, there’s that similarity, with king Oyo Nyimba kabamba Iguru Rukidi as their recent king now since 1995 till date, taking over the throne at the age of three, from his deceased father Omukama Patrick David Mathew Kaboyo Rwamuhokya olimi (111 )who died at the age of 50,on 26th August.
Tooro kingdom was divided into two groups; bairu and Baguma who took part in crop farming and cattle keeping respectively who lived in harmony as one provided milk, meat and butter while the other provided food products.
The monarch had a lot of norms and values that every mutooro had to follow, passed from the ancestors to the young ones.
Pride in being one is so significant right from birth. the young ones were taught to respect their elders, love one’s tribe and country.
Amutooro was supposed to speak with dignity making them have a hard time in pronouncing foreign words so clearly.
So ceremonious, as the word “omutooro” means, a reminder to wear their best attire when welcoming guests . walking fast was considered undignified in a Tooro environment traditionally and in present day now, this has contradicted with our normal lives of today where are work requirements is good time management while on Uganda Safaris.
Another contradicting one ,is one should eat slowly, so as to enjoy the food process by process while sitting, but today , we eat fast foods . still about food, in Tooro kingdom, some foods were a Taboo; birds including their eggs weren’t eaten, fish too though they over talked about their great lakes and yet they couldn’t eat any fish, pork and also any animal with upper teeth couldn’t be eaten increasing their chances of malnutrition, with women being affected double by the taboo.
But with time, things were changing one step at a time due to the new era developing but some are still following the Taboo most especially the old women, her kitchen was out of bound for cooking any of those foods mentioned above.
A standard was closely followed in naming a baby, right from twins to those who followed twins.a baby boy was named after 4 days while a girl after 3 days presided by the elders who talked over a meal , sipping a brew choose a name. not until when Islam and Christianity came into existence with now a person having a Moslem or a Christian name while the other given by elders is a surname. Pet names to have dominated the Tooro kingdom with any mutooro having at least any one of the pet names namely; Amooti,Akiiki,Abwooli,Adyeeri,Araali,Ateenyi, Abbooki,Acaali,Apuuli and Atwooki.
Including the king too who had two pet names and he was called those names based on the occasions, incase he was praised to the rank of the gods, his called “okaali ” as his pet name and Amooti on daily basis.
Clan issues were also a priority, blood relations were important to avoid inbreeding, every child produced belonged to the father’s clan, with a point that marrying someone from his or her clan or the mother’s clan was a Taboo, even between a girl and a boy, they were both supposed to mention their clans to each other before things go further.