Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The installation of the new Archbishop of Kampala, His Grace Dr. Paul Ssemogerere cost a whopping Shillings 250milion against his wish for a simple function.
“I wanted a simple function, with at least 30 people and a function lasting for about 30 minutes given the circumstance,” says Archbishop Ssemogerere.
He however explains that when the organizing committee was selected, the members secretly started preparing for a huge event.
Dr. Ssemogerere says that when he learnt about their arrangements, he wanted to halt their preparations but members advised him to stop looking into their work and wait for his installation.
Emmanuel Katongole, the Papal Knight and chairperson of the central organizing committee for the function noted that given the fact that a few people had been invited for the function, they drafted a budget of Shillings 250 million.
Katongole explains that the budget excluded services and goods pledged in kind by individuals or institutions. As it is usually done in the Catholic church, part of the money was collected through church structures with each parish contributing a specific quota for the function. Another portion of the budget was funded by individuals and institutions.
“In a space of two weeks, the budget had been fully funded and surpassed giving the function momentum as everything moved smoothly as planned,” Katongole noted.
Although the Archbishop had envisioned a function with 30 guests, the cathedral was fully packed with many of the guests failing to secure a seat inside thus occupying several tents erected outside the cathedral.
Later in the evening, selected guests were invited to dine and wine with the new Archbishop at Pope Paul memorial hotel.
There have been discussions among the faithful and the general public about the huge budgets of church functions with many describing them as extravagant.
However, Katongole says that it is very hard to have a function hosting a big congregation and rule out the possibility of huge expenditure.
The ceremony was a success.