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Local People – Rwenzori Mountains National Park

Rwenzori Mountains National park has a strong cultural/spiritual attachment with the Bakonzo and Bamba people. The Bakonjo people say that since time immemorial they have regarded the Rwenzoris as a repository of many blessings to their socio-economic well-being. As such, the mountains constituted a form of reserve even before the colonial period.

The cultural significance of the mountains is demonstrated by traditional rituals performed within Rwenzori Mountains National Park including the construction of hunters‟ shrines for animal sacrifices, ceremonies involving the exorcism of evil spirits, and human burials. There is a belief that if a person dies in the mountains his body is not to be brought home but must be buried where he died.

Rwenzori Glaciers are at the center of the traditional belief system of the BaKonzo who have long lived around the Rwenzori Mountains. It is believed that the snow/ice, “Nzururu”, is the ‘father’ of the BaKonzo deities, “Kitasamba” and “Nyabibuya” who are responsible for human life, its continuity and its welfare.

Explore the Bakonzo way of life

The Bakonzo people have lives on the slopes of the Rwenzori for generations and the mountain is central to their culture and cosmology. The peaks are the home of their principal god, Kitasamba, whose name may not be spoken on the mountain. Eighteen sacred Konzo sites on the mountain have been identified, mapped and protected as worship areas.

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