Ugandans urged to invest in museums

Minister of State for Tourism, Martín Mugarra speaking at the press center

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Minister of State for Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities, Martin Mugarra, has urged Ugandans to establish more private and community museums as a means of preserving the country’s heritage and promoting tourism.

He made the call as the country prepares to celebrate International Museum Day on May 18 under the theme “Museums shape knowledge for the future.”

Mugarra said museums are dynamic learning institutions that foster learning, discovery and cultural understanding. He adds that museums play a fundamental role in the transformation of society. He added that they are an important means of cultural exchange, enrichment, mutual understanding, cooperation and peace between people.

Jackiline Nyiracyiza, Acting Commissioner of Museums, revealed that the number of visitors to the Uganda National Museum has increased every financial year. “In 2022 we had 67,000 visitors; in 2023 we reach 131,000, and this year, from July of last year to the date of March 30, 2024, we are at 117,000,” she stated.

Nyiracyiza also said that national museums do not compete with private and community museums, but rather regulate them and ensure that they meet the standards set as provided in the Museums and Monuments Law of 2023.

Lilly Ajarova, Executive Director of the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB), said that although the UTB has the mandate to commercialize tourism, collective efforts are needed, revealing that there are plans to internationally display Ugandan artefacts while working with the ministry and other museums. whole world.

Uganda has several private museums throughout the country and the National Museum, which is aided by the government.

In the past, museum operators have asked the Government for funding for the sector. They argue that each region of Uganda has many places of historical interest and history that the government needs to invest in to enable its expansion and that adequate funding would ensure adequate standards and regulatory frameworks that are missing for museum operations to be lucrative for the country. .