The kabaka’s palace

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Mengo

Mengo palace covers a very wide area and it s covered with an extensive fence around it It was constructed by Ssekabaka Mwanga11 in 1885 When he took over the throne in 1884 at the age of 18 he first put his palace at Masaja While at Masaja Mwanga thought of shifting his palace to another palace He had always admired Nkaawo hill on which members of the Nvubu clan kept their grinding stones Emmengo These grinding stones were used to grind herbal medicine Mwanga decided to construct his palace at Nkaawo hill and the grinding stones were shifted It s from these grinding stones Emmengo that the name Mengo was adopted In 1966 the then Prime Minister of Uganda Milton Obote ordered a dramatic attack to oust Kabaka Mutesa II by the forces of Idi Amin soldiers stormed the palace and after several days of fighting Mutesa was forced to flee and live in exile in the UK The building was duly converted to army barracks while an adjacent site became a notorious underground prison and torture-execution chamber built by Idi Amin in the 1970s This site a dark concrete tunnel with numerous dark damp cells which were separated by an electrified passage of water to prevent escape also original charcoal messages written by former prisoners on the walls one reads Obote you have killed me but what about my children On the grounds are also the scrap metal remains of Mutesa s Rolls Royce destroyed by Idi Amin

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