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History[edit | edit source]
Uganda takes its name from the Buganda kingdom, which encompasses a large portion of the south of the country, including the capital Kampala. The people of Uganda were hunter-gatherers until 1,700 to 2,300 years ago, when Bantu-speaking populations migrated to the southern parts of the country.
Beginning in 1894, the area was ruled as a protectorate by the UK, who established administrative law across the territory. Uganda gained independence from the UK on 9 October 1962. The period since then has been marked by intermittent conflicts, including a lengthy civil war against the Lord's Resistance Army in the Northern Region led by Joseph Kony, which has caused hundreds of thousands of casualties.
The official languages are English and Swahili, although any other language may be used as a medium of instruction in schools or other educational institutions or for legislative, administrative or judicial purposes as may be prescribed by law. Luganda, a central language, is widely spoken across the country, and several other languages are also spoken including Runyoro, Runyankole, Rukiga, Luo and Lusoga.
The president of Uganda is Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, who came to power in January 1986 after a protracted six-year guerrilla war. He has since eliminated the presidential term limits and the presidential age limit, becoming president for life.
Timeline[edit | edit source]
1830s - Arab traders moved inland from the Indian Ocean coast of East Africa
1886 - 1890 There were a series of religious wars in Buganda, initially between Muslims and Christians and then, from 1890, between Protestants and Catholics
1900 - 1920 A sleeping sickness epidemic in the southern part of Uganda, along the north shores of Lake Victoria, killed more than 250,000 people
1962 -Uganda gained independence from Britain
1963 - Uganda became a republic but maintained its membership in the Commonwealth of Nations
1971 - In a military coup Amin seized control of the country and ruled Uganda as dictator with the support of the military for the next eight years. He carried out mass killings within the country to maintain his rule. An estimated 80,000–500,000 Ugandans lost their lives during his regime
1998 - Democratic Republic of the Congo during the Second Congo War, resulting in an estimated 5.4 million deaths