Martyrs day in Uganda has greatly been affected with covid-19 this is holy day that is held by religious Christian pilgrims of the catholic and protestant faiths every 3rd of June of each year to honor the Christian martyrs killed for their faith by the King of Buganda between the years of 1885 – 1887. The town of Namugongo in north-east of Uganda’s capital Kampala is place where this religious ceremony is held and brings millions of pilgrims around the world to come and witness which I turn builds religious tourism in the country.
This event which attracts many Christian faithfuls from the region and beyond has been banned this year because of the corona virus pandemic ravaging the world.
The cancellation of this year’s Martyrs Day celebrations due to Covid-19 pandemic did not only affect those for whom the day is important but has also disrupted the projections of different businesses that depend on the boost in sales that are linked to this annual event like the sale of religious regalia, vendors, small businesses and companies which pitch camp in Namugongo to cash in on close to two million pilgrims who visit the Martyrs Shrines.
Developing Faith Based Tourism
Uganda is on track to develop religious sites across the country to attract more tourists to such places. The Ministry Of Tourism Wildlife And Antiquities developed the National Tourism Sector Development Plan 2015/16 – 2019/20 with one of the key objectives to develop and strengthen partnership with faith-based institutions to promote faith-based tourism.
The Upgrading of key religious sites has been done which has resulted into a huge number of both domestic and foreign tourists with its ripple benefits boosting the economy and the tourism sector as a whole.