Mityana: The place where Walumbe hid

Monday May 12 2014

By Fred Muzaale

Mityana District was carved out of Mubende District in 2005. The district has a rich history and is part of Buganda Kingdom. It is the district where a cave called Ttanda where “Walumbe” or death is believed to have entered and disappeared from earth. This has made it a popular tourism site.

Mityana is bordered by Kiboga District to the north, Nakaseke and Wakiso districts to the east Mpigi, Butambala and Gomba districts to the south and Mubende District to the west. The district is about 45kms from Kampala and a two-hour drive from the city.

The district’s growth has been stimulated by the Kampala - Fort portal highway, which has more than doubled trade in the town. The district has a total area of 14,597,85 hectares.

Mityana is mainly composed of tribes such as Baganda, which is the dominant tribe, Batoro, Bakiga, Banyoro, Banyarwanda and Balaalo.
The district collects about Shs200 million from local revenue every financial year meaning 97 per cent of the district budget is funded by the central government.

The district has a population of about 360,000 people and a population growth rate of 3 per cent per annum, according to district administration records.
Also, 40 per cent of the population are between 15-49 years. The women in the reproductive age group (15-49 years) make up 40 per cent of the district population.

The administrative set up is composed of three constituencies which include Busujju, Mityana North and Mityana South constituencies. It has 11 sub-counties, which include Busujju, Malangala, Butayunja, Kakindu, Banda, Manyi, Busimbi, Sekanyonyi, Namungo, Kikandwa, Bulera and Lalangalo. It has one town council, Mityana Town Council which covers an area of 21 square kilometres. The topography is made up of gentle slopes with open U-shaped valleys.

Mityana is a very traditional Ugandan area. Houses and gardens are close together. The main market is a vibrant, colourful place.

The district has 14 health centre IIIs and three health centre IVs that include Ssekanyonyi, Kyamutuugo and Mwera health centre IVs. It has one hospital called Mityana Hospital located in Mityana Town.
The hospital, that is now under renovation and expansion, was built by the Buganda government in the 1940s.
The average distance from one health centre to another is about 10kms. The staffing level in the health centres stands at 50 per cent. Because of this, some health units lack specialists in some diseases.
The District Health Officer, Mr Fred Lwasampijja, however, says the health units fairly have stocks of essential drugs.

Water coverage
The safe water coverage in the district stands at 72 per cent. Mityana has a total of 1,410 domestic water points of which 97 have been non-functional for five years. The access rates vary from 34 per cent in Bulera Sub-county to 95 per cent in Butayunja, Kakindu and Busimbi Sub-counties. The district has 13 piped schemes (eight surface water based, five groundwater based) serving approximately 33 per cent of the population; 67 per cent use water from point sources.

The district has five central forest reserves including Kasa and Kabukira central forest reserves and a number of private forests. However, human activities such as farming and charcoal burning have negatively impacted on the forest cover, leading to loss of about 55 per cent of the forest cover.

The district has a total of 156 government-aided primary schools and 22 government-aided secondary schools. Most of the schools have permanent structures.
The Ttanda Archeological Cave is the most famous tourism site in the district. This site has been developed and attracts many tourists. The district is also a birth place for Uganda martyrs like Noah Mawagali, Ambrosio Kibuuka and Luka Baanabakintu.

Economic activities
Most people in the district are subsistence farmers who grow crops such as maize, fruits, banana, cassava, beans, coffee and sweet potatoes. The main cash crops include coffee and maize. A number of people, especially in Mityana Town and other urban centers engage in trade while some communities engage in fishing from Lake Wamala.

According to the Mityana DPC, Mr Henry Kintu, a total of 123 land cases were registered last year. Robbery along the Mityana-Fort Portal high way is rampant as well as defilement and domestic violence. But the DPC says they have intensified patrols on the highway and also carry out community policing to curb crime.

Natural resources
Lake Wamala that has the biggest part in Mityana is one of the natural resources found in the district. The lake is the main source of fish consumed in the district. The lake shore is also habitat for a number of bird species, flora and fauna.