Church Provides Belonging, Friendship, and Free Eye Treatment for Kisozi John Musisi.

Mr Musisi (right), Director Dr. Mulumba (second from left) and community members.

Mr. Musisi is a resident of Kayini II village in Kayini Parish in Seeta-Namuganga subcounty. He was born in 1953 and belongs to the Nkima (Monkey) Clan of Buganda.

He studied at Kayini Church of Uganda Primary School, one of the historical missionary schools, in neighboring present-day Kayini I village.

He grew up when Josam Kibuuka was the chief of Kiwologoma in Kyaggwe, under the administration of the then Kabaka (king) of Buganda, Sir Edward Mutesa II, who became the first president of post-independence Uganda between 1962-1966.

According to Mr. Musisi, the interest of the Kabaka’s government in the at the time was to register people occupying the Kabaka’s land, which is Buganda Kingdom’s land Crown land under the Buganda Agreement of 1900. The Agreement, which gave Buganda a large degree of internal autonomy within the British-ruled Uganda Protectorate, imposed a tax on huts and guns, designated the chiefs as tax collectors, and testified to the continued alliance of British and Buganda Kingdom’s interests. Mr. Musisi recalls that in his community, the chiefs collected busuulu (land rates) bibanja holders (occupants of Kabaka’s land), as well as taxes on coffee, cotton, sorghum and other cash crops.

Mr. Musisi grew up to become a veterinarian, and subsistence farmer. At his community church, Kyajinja Church of Uganda, he has served as a lay reader for more than a decade, and he is part of the church choir as a keyboard player. He says the church has given him a belonging, friends, and personal benefits, citing the free treatment of his eyes he received through the church in 2022.

On challenges faced by the Kayini community, Mr. Musisi quickly points out health, saying health care nfu (its dead). Mr. Musisi says Kayini Parish is currently not served by any public health center (HC III), the nearest being Namuganga HC III. Under the government health structure, a HC III is at the sub-county level and is the lowest level for maternal health services, with a maternity ward but with no other in-patient services.

In terms of education, Mr. Musisi sites the schools in the parish as: Kayini Church of Uganda Primary School; Kamwokya and Kasana primary schools and Shalijah Muslim Seconday School operated by Uganda Muslim Education Association (UMEA), and Kasana Vocational School.

The Kayini community relies on spring wells and boreholes for domestic water. Most boreholes were constructed by one non-governmental organization (NGO), Suubi Community Projects Uganda, in premises of religious institutions (Churches and Mosques) or schools. The challenge is that the NGO has since left and community members are required to contribute money for the maintenance of the boreholes. Some boreholes broke down years ago, such as the one at Kyajinja Church of Uganda, and the community has never been able to repair them.