Rukungiri is located 430km from Uganda’s capital, Kampala in south-western Uganda. President Idi Amin Dada created it in 1974 as North Kigezi District and the residents crowned him Life President. It was later to be renamed Rukungiri in 1980.
Rukungiri borders Mitooma District to the north, Ntungamo to the east, Kabale to the south east, Kanungu to the south and Lake Edward and DR Congo to the west. It covers an area of 1524.28 square km with 11 per cent tropical high forests, 5.5 per cent wood land, 2.6 per cent bush land, 21.3 per cent grassland, 52 per cent farmland and 7.4 per cent open water.
It has three constituencies of Rujumbura, Rubabo and Rukungiri Municipality, nine sub-counties of Nyakishenyi, Nyarushanje, Buyanja, Kebisoni, Bwambara, Bugangari, Ruhinda, Buhunga and Nyakagyeme. There are three divisions; Southern, Eastern and Western, 79 parishes, four town boards, and 899 villages.
Rukungiri is mostly inhabited by the Bakiga, Bahororo, Banyabutumbi and other small sub-tribes.
According to recent statistics, Rukungiri has a population of 316,400 persons, 153,600 are males while 167,700 are females with a population density of 208 persons per square kilometer. The literacy rate stands at 85 per cent.
There are 162 UPE primary schools and 61 private primary schools, 52 secondary schools, 15 post primary certificates and diploma awarding institutions. Makobore Secondary School Kinyasano and Immaculate Heart Girls High School are the biggest pride in the district.
The major tourist attractions include, Lake Edward and Rwenshama fish landing site, the Queen Elizabeth National Park, Ihimbo and Rubabo hot springs, Kisizi waterfalls, Eibare rya Bikira Maria, the Nengo Western Rift valley Escapement, Ihimbo forest reserve, River Mirera, culture among others.
Movers and shakers of Rukungiri
Bushoberwa Ndinyenka is the former ESO director who served as ambassador to South Sudan and currently serves in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
is the URA chief and from Buyanja which is the area in Rukungiri from where many influential heads hail.
Can Justus Byagageire is one of the great elders who served as a civil servant. He currently serves the church as a lay Canon.
Betty Muzanira is the Rukungiri Municipal council speaker. She is a former Rukungiri town council councillor.
Amb Sam Turyamuhika
is Uganda’s ambassador to Somalia and a former bush war sympathiser.
is the Rukungiri district chairman who formerly worked as Kebisoni Sub-county Chairperson.
Gen Aronda Nyakairima
is the minister of Internal Affairs and former army commander. He has been influential in local matters
is the former district chairperson and currently director at the main opposition FDC party.
is the Former MUK Guild president who came to the lime light when he won the 1994 CA election for Rujumbura.
Bishop Edward Muhima is the retired Bishop who has served as a dean at Uganda Christian University.
Brig Javas Mugyenyi is the commander Armoured Brigade Masaka, a brigade honoured for good training.
Chris Tushabe Karobwa
is a prominent businessman in Bunyoro and Tooro area dealing in transport.
is a key actress and script writer and one of the proud entertainment ambassadors for Rukungiri.
Samuel Bankobeza is the deputy commander of the Uganda Air force. He is an aeronautical engineer and a long serving pilot.
Col Dom Twesigomwe
is the presidential adviser on defence on Somalia.
Gen Jim Katugugu Muhwezi
is MP Rujumbura County. He is also former director ISO and minister for Health and Education.
is opposition FDC women league national chairperson and also the district party chairperson.
is the director TEAM Business Institute. The school has several branches in Uganda and Rwanda.
Justice John Bosco Katutsi
the No nonsense judge of the High Court. He is known for resolving some of the hardest cases.
Eng Pascal Gakyaro
is the director Alpha Gama engineering company and former Soroti Flying School director.
Lt Col Paddy Ankunda.
is the UPDF army spokesperson who has served in different positions in public relations of the army.
Mary Paula Turyahikayo
commonly referred to as Mama Rubabo, is serving her 2nd term in office as Rubabo Constituency MP.
Peter Paul Katutsi
is an advocate in Kampala who has followed in the footsteps of his father, Justice Katutsi.
is a teacher and former PRA suspect whose arrest sparked protests and led to the seizure of the High Court.
Dr Johnson Byabashaija
the head of Uganda’s prison, a trained veterinary doctor and one of the symbols of control of Rukungiri.
Steven Ouma is serving his first year as the district CAO, known for demanding accountability and transparency.
is the Secretary to Treasury and former permanent secretary ministry of Finance.
served as the district health education officer for a very long time.
is former IGG and now a justice of the Supreme Court. He is an active participant in district matters.
is among the people who mobilised the 27 soldiers that started the 1981-1986 bush war. He is an investor.
Prof Mondo Kagonyera
is the Makerere University Chancellor and former Rubabo County legislator.
born in the influential Ruhindi family is former Kabale District Woman MP.
is wife to the Late Deputy Prime Minister Eriya Kategaya.
is son to NRA war hero Kashillingi, he is a former presidential aide currently serving in the Ministry of Defence.
Eliot Kabangira Magande
is a veteran journalist who worked at Radio Uganda for over 15 years.
is the chairman of the NGO board in Uganda and former district chairperson.
Sam Karekaho Karegyesa
is the prince of Mpororo Kingdom and son to the successor of Makobore of Kigezi.
Roland Mugume Kaginda
is Rukungiri municipality MP and opposition FDC figure in the district.
is a principal banking officer at Bank of Uganda
Dr Alex Kamugisha is the former minister of state for Health and a big political rival to Gen Jim Muhwezi in Rujumbura.
Dr Elisa Rutahigwa
is the district health officer who is also a strong political figure in the FDC party in Rukungiri.
Dr Zephar Baryabakabo
is the director Uganda Aids commission. He is known for his role in the fight against HIV and promoting sanitation.
is the only NRM councillor in Rukungiri municipal council.
is former RDC in central region and curently is the presidential adviser on Rukungiri.
is the district information officer also serving the portfolio of the district clerk to council.
is an advocate of the High Court who served as a court prosecutor and state attorney.
Prisca Sezi Mbaguta
is the state minster for Public Service. and a former commissioner in the ministry of Public Service.
Jackline Ruhindi Mbabazi
is wife to Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi and sister to Hope Mwesigye.
Eva Rukikaire Mwine
is the director Tanzania Tours one of the big tour companies in the country.
Dr Sam Byagageire
is the presidential assistant on Veterans affairs who has served at various levels of administration.
Eng Frank Ariyo is the director Pearl engineering company one of the prominent companies in Uganda.
is the director Rukungiri Universal Primary School, one of the best schools in the district.
is a prominent city advocate and son to the late Bateyo Kigyere, an influential figure in Rukungiri.
Prof Peter Mugyenyi
is Director Joint Clinical Research Centre and Chancellor Mbarara University of Science and Technology.
Next Monday the Daily Monitor brings you the movers and shakers of Kiruhura District, the tourist attractions and all other important issues. If you have any information on the western district please send to the address below