King Oyo Fast: A Day With The Fasting King Top story

3966 Views Fort Portal, Uganda

In short
On Monday, King Oyo declared the fasting at his palace in Fort Portal. The fasting will last six days. The King’s declaration raised several questions like what will the King do during the fasting period, will he eat food, will he confine himself in the palace, among others.

Two months ago, Tooro Kingdom announced that the King of Tooro, Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV will fast to protest the division of his kingdom. The announcement surprised the country.
 
Commenting on the King’s move, President Museveni said that fasting would help the King to reduce his weight and remain fit.
 
On Monday, King Oyo declared the fasting at his palace in Fort Portal. The fasting will last six days. The King’s declaration raised several questions like what will the King do during the fasting period, will he eat food, will he confine himself in the palace, among others.
 
The King’s aides gave the Uganda Radio Network reporter in Fort Portal a rare opportunity to observe what exactly happens when King Oyo is fasting.
 
Since declaring the fasting, King Oyo spends the day praying, in intercessions and listening to testimonies.He doesn't eat a single meal until late in the evening.
 
King Oyo, dressed comfortably, starts the day in private prayer in his palace with Best Kemigisa, the Queen Mother, some members of the Tooro royal family and kingdom palace staff. During the prayers which last ten minutes, they ask God to protect the King and also pray for peace to prevail in the Kingdom. The King also listens to testimonies and often smiles and utters praise the lord,  when the testimony is interesting.
 
After the prayers, King Oyo is then joined by several clergy from the Anglican and Catholic faith. They sing and pray  with him as they hold his hands. He then retreats to his room to read the Bible and meditate.
 
In the afternoon, gospel music blares out as the King accompanied by his mother, emerge out of the palace and joins the rest of his subjects for an open prayer session at the palace compound. Several tents have been erected to accommodate the large number of guests. The prayers are led by Apostle Lillian Mboya, from Mombasa in Kenya. As Mboya preaches, King Oyo listens attentively and often nods his head. On the day this reporter was there, there were 25 kingdom subjects to observe the fast with the King.
 
At 7:00pm, King Oyo breaks the fast and serves (kwinura) his subjects with food and drinks. On the menu: Rice, Matooke, Millet, Groundnuts. No meat is served. Praying and singing continues until 9pm.
 
William Kasigazi, a resident of Fort Portal, welcomes the fasting saying that is timely given the fact the region is still tense following the attacks in the districts of Kasese, Bundibugyo and Ntoroko, which were part of Tooro Kingdom. He says that Oyo's subjects should also join him in the fast so that peace can prevail in the kingdom.
 
//Cue in: “he is doing right…”//
Cue out: “…doing good for his subjects.”//
 
On Friday, the Muslim community will join King Oyo at the palace and pray with him. On Saturday, the end of the fasting period, the church service will be led by the Seventh Day Adventist Church.

 

About the author

Emmanuel Kajubu
Emmanuel Kajubu is proud to have been the first Ugandan journalist to write in depth pieces about the Tooro Kingdom institution. His knowledge of the inner workings of the Tooro Kingdom is what made him privy to the splits in the royal family. These splits almost challenged Tooro Omukama Oyo Nyimba Iguru's reign.

Culture, agriculture and the environment are just two areas of many of interest to Kajubu. As long as he has held a pen, Kajubu has also written about public policy, health and crime.

Kajubu is keen on impacting his society not just as a writer but also a trainer and mentor. Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts fall under his docket. Kajubu has been a URN staff member since 2008.