KIU Cultural Gala 2018: The Most Competitive Cultural Gala Ever Seen

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By Angela Luyiga

Kampala International University (KIU) students managed to prove that behind the scholarly walls, there is talent. At the recently held 6th KIU cultural gala, the Baganda Nkobazamboga emerged winners over 27 other cultural groups from the different parts of the world and Uganda; Rwandese, Congolese, Nigerians as well as the Basamia, Acholis, Ankole, Gishus all participated.

The event kicked off on March 16th with a set piece where the different student associations sang the KIU anthem and later performed their traditional folk songs. At this, the Baganda managed to convince the judges with their angelic voices.

Mary Kabayikirizi; the Deputy Guild President was especially proud of her heritage, the Banyarwanda’s performance who they took us through their rich culture with a theme on marriage where a girl was carried by a group of gentlemen in a basket-like carriage which they called “enghoozi”.

The event which went on for two days till March 17th saw the different cultural groups performing their dances with African beauty showcased at its very best. Clearly the students and the various leaders had done their job. KIU being an international University, there was a touch of all tribes and nations hence fulfilling one of its goals in celebrating diversity.

The dramatic moment was when the Gishu performed a “live” imitation of the Imbalu session right on stage. The performance was almost real due to the liquid that looked like blood.

In attendance were the Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs, Dr. Annette Kezaabu Kasimbazi and the Commissioner for Culture and Family Affairs, Ministry of Gender, Ms. Juliana Akoryo who was the Chief Guest. 

Ms. Juliana Akoryo applauded KIU for having disciplined students and for also allowing the students to showcase their various cultures and talents.

“In many ways, culture is the way we tell our stories, celebrate, remember the past, entertain ourselves and imagine the future. Celebrating our culture helps us see the world through the eyes of others. It helps us understand that there is more that binds us than that which makes us different,” she said.

She further emphasized how important culture was for everyone since the world today needs people that don’t see things through a single point of view, “It needs people who respect each other, understand their differences and come together.”

The Dean of Students, Ms. Jovia Karwana added that the event was a very big success compared to all the other cultural galas. “This event was very colorful and it was highly attended by both students and staff not forgetting the unique style that the students showcased,” she said.

However just like any event, a few challenges surfaced after the results were announced. This had some associations drop out of the race and others trying to challenge the results. But in all, the goal of celebrating our diversity was achieved as intended.

Dr. Kezaabu, in her closing remarks, stressed that a cultural gala is a great way for students to get cultured. She noted that being cultured has an impact on how someone is perceived even well after their University years. “We graduate you after you’ve satisfied us in character and in learning,” she said.

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