“1 MILLION YOUTH PROJECT TO BUILD THE TESO KINGDOM PALACE BEGINS IN SOROTI 2017. The Prime Minister of Iteso Cultural Union Paul Sande Emolot has given ago ahead to the youth leaders of Teso to mobilise 1 billion shillings to construct the palace for the Teso Kingdom.
This project which has dragged feet for the last 22 years has now gotten a new momentum from the youth wing of the kingdom which has put up a team of youth leaders from Teso Kenya and Teso Uganda to mobilize 1000.000 of their brothers and sisters to contribute a minimum of 1000 Ushs or 33 Kshs and deposit in MTN mobile collection account, so that His highness papa Iteso gets a place where he can meet all Iteso in their various categories.” (Copied verbatim from a face book wall)
First, this project is factoid filled. Iteso HAVE NO KINGS AND QUEENS. From time immemorial Iteso have never had and should never have Kings; it is inconsistent with the central governing logic of Iteso.
Iteso are an advanced group, from whom others have appropriated knowledge on the benefits of governing through highly decentralised and manageable power centres. Iteso have a clan-based system of governance in which each clan is independent and IS governed by a council of elders. Inter-clan meetings traditionally happened, yes, but once in a while.
And it is fascinating to note that. seemingly, the same people who decry over-centralisation of power to the central government are the ones who are prescribing the need for centralising the power centres of the Iteso into a concocted institution. One cannot decry over-centralisation of power within the government of The Republic of Uganda and at the same time prescribe it for Iteso. It does not make sense.
Until the logical fallacy of pretending Iteso Kings is resolved, one finds it unproductive to discuss and or sanction ‘development’ interventions proclaimed for the benefit of Iteso and to be chanelled through the concocted Iteso King. The Iteso King is a factoid.
Iteso youth would rather heed calls such as of Dr. Stella Nyanzi for them to mobilize funds for the construction of a factory that makes sanitary pads – a fabulous long term intervention which has multiple benefits, economic and otherwise. How many Ateso girls stay home from school because they are menstruating and do not have pads?
Please, Iteso, let us get our priorities right.
Photo: Young girls enjoy themselves after school at Loro Sub-County in Oyam District. Ateso (girls of present day Teso) are similar to their sisters of Lango.