It was a weekend of celebration for Ugandans living in Rwanda as they marked their country’s 54th Independence Day.
The celebrations, organised by the Ugandan High Commission in Rwanda, started on Friday with guests from Uganda and Rwanda treated to a night of comedy at the High Commissioner’s Residence in Kigali’s upscale neighbourhood of Nyarutarama.
Ugandan comedians Daniel Omara and Cotilda Inapo did not disappoint as they wowed guests with rib-cracking jokes.
The night also saw performances by music duo Charly and Nina, saxophonist Herbert Rock as well as the Decent Band, who entertained their audience with Ugandan songs that saw revellers get to their feet to sing and dance along.
The event saw the guests leave the premises after midnight after exchanging pleasantries with their long time and new found friends.
The following day, Saturday, was the official celebration of Uganda Independence Day, with an event taking place at Kigali Serena Hotel and attended by Ugandans living in Rwanda, members of the diplomatic corps accredited to Rwanda, and senior officials from both countries.
Organisers did not hesitate to seize every opportunity to showcase the beauty of the country, otherwise known as the Pearl of Africa, including ‘naming’ tables after Ugandan places, cultural sites and features.
Celebrated Ugandan MC Roger Mugisha, who was the master of ceremonies for the night, set the mood for the independence celebrations by making jokes that specifically resonated with those from Uganda.
Guests were welcomed with cultural dance performances by the Natumayini Cultural Group before they were treated to performances by Chilean jazz guitarist Tito al Uribe.
Jazz band Neptunez Band also performed some of the Ugandan oldies that dominated the chats back in the day while guests also enjoyed food and drinks.
Johnson Busingye, the Minister for Justice and the Attorney General, who was the chief guest, said that celebrating Uganda Independence in Rwanda was befitting given the common history and strong ties between the two countries.
“Our countries and peoples enjoy excellent relations,” he said. “Our bilateral relations have existed for a long time, have withstood trying times have prevailed and we have embarked on a common journey to better the lives of the people of both countries and of all east Africans”.
“Many Rwandans once called Uganda home and continue to do so,” he said.
Uganda’s Myko Ouma and his band took to the stage and performed Ugandan and East African finest tunes.
The event went on past midnight.
Uganda Independence Day falls on October 9.