Breaking

Annual Festival to Transform Rwenzori Communities

Johnson Mboga, the chairman of the Kasese Tourism Investment Forum says while there is a lot of public knowledge of the region as a tourism hub, companies and individuals from other areas have benefited more from the resources than the residents.
Tourism investor, Amos Wekesa says tourism should transform local communities

Audio 5

The United Nations has teamed up with a group of private sector companies to develop the tourism-rich Rwenzori region.    

The region is known as Uganda’s tourism hub due to the rich ecosystem, the scenic terrain, craters, and snowfalls on the mountain Rwenzori, but is also a mineral-rich and agricultural area.  

Johnson Mboga, the chairman of the Kasese Tourism Investment Forum says while there is a lot of public knowledge of the region as a tourism hub, companies and individuals from other areas have benefited more from the resources than the residents.  

He says that it is the reason they decided to team up as the business community to pool resources and have a bigger voice to attract attention to the competitive advantage they have. 

//Cue in: “This is a….. 

Cue out: …..as investors.”//  

The forum has now attracted the wider tourism community and other investors in the country to support their newly launched annual festival dubbed Rwenzori Theluji Festival due in September.  

The festival will involve cultural, business and sports, mountaineering, and other activities that showcase the opportunities in the Rwenzori region to attract investors and tourists. 

The most exciting addition is now the marathon organized by Equator Heights and supported by other corporations like Standard Chartered Bank, Uganda Breweries, and Jumia. 

 

Mboga says it is hoped that the annual festivals will attract all kinds of businesses including micro-enterprises to benefit from the thousands of people expected.    

//Cue in: “Special for us… 

Cue out: …many activities.”//

Equator Heights Executive Director, Amos Wekesa says the festival is a good idea and if sustained it is expected to raise at least 200 million dollars in earnings for the people in the region.   He says that on top of that, the festival and the marathon will enhance the marketing of the region’s beauty because many people hear about it but do not actually know it. 

 

“I climbed the Rwenzori Mountains recently and the beauty is indescribable.  It is out of this world. The marathon will help draw world attention to this resource and increase the tourism numbers,” says Wekesa.   He says Mount Rwenzori alone if sustainably marketed to the world can attract 1 billion dollars.  

//Cue in: “The idea for us… 

Cue out: …look out for.”// 

 According to Wekesa, the festival and the marathon are expected to attract people from the neighboring countries and they are in talks with elite runners and prominent personalities to grace it.  

On the future of the marathon, Wekesa says, at a certain stage, more likely next year in June, they will involve the Uganda Amateur Athletics Federation to try to make it an international event.   

//Cue in: “It’s going to be… 

Cue out: …give the district.”//  

The festival is also a precursor to the celebration of World Tourism Month and will be launched in different places and at different events.  

The Marketing Manager, Emmy Hakishimana says their involvement in the festival and the marathon is aimed at supporting mainly the farmers to feed their industry with raw materials, but also players along the value chain including retailers and distributors.   

//Cue in: “It’s not just… 

Cue out: …in marketing.      

The Rwenzori Marathon was mooted with the aim of promoting sports tourism, fostering healthy lifestyles, and highlighting climate change.

It will consist of a 42km full marathon, a 21km half marathon, and a 5km fun run.   

Images 1

Keywords