Obuntubulamu: Promoting Peace and Development in Uganda through cultural values

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The project aims to foster Uganda’s peace and development by reviving positive cultural values, attributes and behavior. Obuntubulamu not only forms a building block to national values and identity but it also harnesses the social integration and endeavors to preserve local relationships in the Ugandan society. The word is a social code of conduct directly related with many human virtues, such as Ensonyi (honour/dignity); Obugunjufu (intelligence/knowledgeable); Obwetoowaze (humility, respect for others); Okufaayo (empathy); Obuyonjo (good hygiene); Obuvunanyizibwa (responsibility); Okweyimirizaawo (self-reliance); Empisa (good moral conduct); Obukulembeze (leadership); Obweerufu (transparency); Obwesimbu (integrity); and Amazima (honesty).

Sustainable Cities and Communities , Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Uganda faces multiple challenges regarding peace and development, such as conflicts related to local and regional politics, land and natural resources disputes, as well as economic vulnerability, food insecurity, violence, environmental degradation, and tensions between refugees and host communities.

Obuntubulamu is a catalyst for social transformation. It posits that behavioral change is possible through culture, specifically to reduce distortion of personal and communal development of citizens by affecting positively the attitudes of the people and interrupting negative patterns. By transforming the social relations, greater social capital and cohesion is nurtured leading to sustainable development for both Uganda’s and non-Uganda’s population living in the country.

The project is working with five cultural institutions (Buganda, Bunyoro, Busoga, Acholi and Alur) and UN Uganda to revitalize and implement the traditional concept of obuntubulamu.  The aim is to promote social cohesion in Uganda through cultural values of mutual respect, humanity, and accountability. As a result, local ownership and trust in institutions have been revitalized, as well as cultural identity and social-cohesion. The initiative is a powerful and scalable solution with potential to strengthen leadership, governance and conflict resolution, particularly in refugee hosting districts.


UNDP , UN Department of Political Affairs

Nnabagereka Development Foundation

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