BAGANDA ARCHITECTURE AT KASUBI HILL
ABSTRACT
The
Baganda
are a bantu
-
speaking people
who make up the largest Ugandan ethnic
group, representing approximately 20% of the
total population
and their kingdom is situated on the northern and western shores of Lake Victoria in modern day Uganda.
The
y
are said
to have
had
centralized
system of government which by 1750 was the
best
wel
l
organized
in
the
Eastern
lacustrine region.
In the past the Buganda Kingdom had for a long
-
time flourished but after independence there has been a serious depreciation in
prosperity evidenced by the poor infrastructure and high poverty levels experience
d by
the
baganda
people
.
Due to the peaceful co
-
existence between the Buganda Kingdom and Uganda government
and
the recognition of traditional kingdoms in the Ugandan
constitution, the Buganda Kingdom is slowly beginning to experience development. The
baga
nda
found on Kasubi hill still practice their
traditiona
l way of life
but with some influence from modernism.
By 2010 the K
asubi hill
housed the
Muzibu Azaala Mpanga
(King‟s
palace/kasubi tombs)
which was stated as being the
largest traditional thatch roof
structure in the world before it was destroyed by fire.
Modernism
has adversely affected their traditional architecture through the use of modern materials and hence loss in their identity
in
terms of their built form
within the kingdom.
This research the
refore focused on the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga
with keen interest on establishing the arc
hitectural constants
, cultural
values and beliefs as well as to document the design principles and building technology
traditionally used by the
Baganda
in designing
their
palaces.
From the literature reviewed, architectural constants were deduced that would influence the data collection and analysis.
The main research method used by the author was that of
observation
with reference made to other palaces found within the k
ingdom.
The data analyzed confirmed the variables established though a few inconsistencies were noted. These inconsistences included
the
change in building technology as well as a significant change with regards to locality of the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga on s
ite as per the
set criteria used. The analysed data gave rise to a summary of findings that states the design principles used by the
baganda
and
conclusions as to why the structure has evolved over time. Recommendations made in this research provide guidel
ines that could be
used to ensure the restoration agenda currently being
pursued
by UNESCO and the Buganda kingdom is successful.

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