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The origin of Stage ya Bakyala in Kampala

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Diplock Segawa returns

Diplock Segawa (L) performs with a saxophonist at his Nkomyeewo concert at the National Concert on Monday. Segawa has not performed for a Ugandan audience for about six years but he recently wowed the crowd at his concert. Courtesy Photo. 

By Dorothy Nakaweesi

Posted  Saturday, December 21  2013 at  00:00

In Summary

Stage ya bakyala is a taxi stage where most of the people who alight and board taxis from are women.

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It was a Monday morning, at about 7:30am I hopped into a taxi and my destination was Kazinga village, which is about two to three kilometers from Bweyogerere Trading Centre near Namanve.

Because I was not sure of the exact stage where to alight from, when the taxi reached Kireka, I requested the conductor, to drop me at Darling Factory.

The conductor communicated to the driver to drop me at ‘Stage ya Bakyala’ (literally meaning women’s stage), I quickly corrected him that I was going to Darling. He replied: “Yes Madam, that is the place”.

My neighbour, a woman, quickly offered to help and said she would show me the place because that is where she was to alight from, so I laid-back.

But the conductor and the driver started joking about it. So I ignored them since some Good Samaritan had offered to help.

Because I was told the place is just a few kilometres after Bweyogerere, when we passed the trading centre, my concentration became so high at least not to miss the Darling Factory signpost.

Just looking on both sides of the road, I noticed women walking in groups of three to five towards the direction we were going.

Alas! I did not see a sign-post but the number of women walking towards a certain factory increased, and then my neighbour alerted the driver that she was getting out at the next stage.

So I knew I had reached my destination and there was Darling Factory.

“Nyabo bakyala bano obalaba. Eno ye stage yamwe,” the conductor said, meaning you can see your fellow women, Madam. This is your stage. I smiled and thanked him.

Kazinga village
Kazinga village located between Bweyogerere and Namanve is one of those areas which used to be so secluded along the Jinja-Kampala highway.

To many, it would pass as part of Bweyogerere or Namanve; while to others, it never really mattered since there were no significant features about the place.

Mr Diriisa Nsubuga, the area local council chairman recalled: “Kazinga never used to be a busy area and it had few houses around.”

Save for a small road going to a herbalist called Livingstone Kiggo, which was later christened ‘Stage ya bakyala’ by the commuter taxi drivers and conductors because of the number of women who alighted from there.

“It’s alleged that Kiggo used to get portions for women and because of their effectiveness, it’s the reason many people flocked the place,” Nsubuga said.

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