Buganda Agreement Of 1900

Buganda Agreement Of 1900. This was the agreement that was signed between the British special commissioner Sir Harry Johnston and the young Kabaka Daudi Chwa II.

The Kabaka was represented by three regents i.e. Sir Apollo Kaggwa, Stanslus Mugwanya and Zakaria Kisingiri.

The agreement was signed on 10th March 1900.

At first it was called the Uganda agreement but since it only applied to Buganda, it came to be known as Buganda agreement.

Why the agreement was signed

  • The agreement was intended to define the position of Buganda within a wider Uganda i.e. that Buganda was also a province like other provinces in Uganda.
  • The agreement was to confirm that Buganda had submitted to British rule i.e. that there was to be no resistance from the Baganda.
  • The agreement was also intended to make Buganda safe for missionary activities especially after the religious wars that had de-stabilized Buganda.
  • The agreement was also intended to promote British exploitation policies i.e. to prepare the ground for the effective exploitation of Uganda resources.
  • The agreement was signed to introduce the rule of law in a country that had under gone a lot of political turmoil e.g the religious wars in Buganda 1880 – 1890.
  • The agreement was also signed to check on the activities of Kabaka Mwanga who still had interest especially in destabilizing the protectorate from Northern Uganda.
  • The agreement was signed to end the threats of Sudanese mutineers in the north i.e. they had become notorious demanding a lot of money from the British who had hired them in 1897.
  • The agreement was also intended to find a suitable way to both the Baganda and the British on how to assist the young Kabaka Daudi Chwa II.
  • The agreement was signed to make Buganda self reliant through introducing economic reforms e.g. cash crops growing and payment of taxes.
  • The agreement was intended to reward the Baganda for their support and co-operation with the British in the extension of colonial rule e.g. Buganda was given the two lost counties that belonged to Bunyoro (Bugangaizi and Buyaga) in Mubende.
  • The agreement was signed to solve the boundary problems between Uganda and her neighbours especially Bunyoro.
  • The agreement was signed to make a spring board or the starting point from where the rest of Uganda would be colonized.
  • The agreement was to serve as a legal document that would protect and safe guard the British imperialist interests in Uganda.
  • The three regents who signed on behalf of the young Kabaka Daudi Chwa were ignorant and only interested in material benefits e.g. land and titles like Sir Apollo Kaggwa.

Terms/provisions of the agreement

  • All men of 18yrs and above were to pay a hut tax of 3 rupees which was to be collected by local chiefs.
  • No more taxes were to be collected without the approval of the Lukiiko and the consent of the Kabaka.
  • Revenue from the taxes was to be for the protectorate government and not the Kabaka, like before.
  • The collection of tributes from neighbouring states like Busoga, Ankole, and Toro by Buganda was to be stopped immediately.
  • All chiefs including the Kabaka were to receive a monthly salary like other civil servants in the protectorate government.
  • All natural resources like minerals and forests were to be in the hands of the protectorate government and it was its duty to exploit them.
  • Land was to be divided into two i.e. Mailo land was to be given to the Kabaka and his subjects while crown land was to be given to the protectorate government.
  • Peasants settling on this land were to pay rent (Busuulu) to the landlords and the Kabaka was to appoint chiefs to look after his mailo land.
  • Crown land included forests, lakes, swamps and the people who settled on this land were not to pay rent or Busuulu.
  • The Kabaka was to be retained as the supreme ruler of Buganda but with the title of his highness.
  • The Kabaka was to rule under close supervision of a British representative and he was to be assisted by three regents i.e. Katikiro (Prime Minister), Muwanika (Treasurer) and Mulamuzi (Judge).
  • The Lukiiko was to have parliamentary powers, to formulate laws and to remain the highest court of appeal.
  • The Kabaka was not to dismiss any member of the Lukiiko without consulting the British government.
  • Membership to the Lukiiko was to be fixed at 89 and of these 60 were notables, 20 Ssaza chiefs, 3 regents / ministers and 6 Kabaka’s nominees.
  • Cases involving foreigners were not to be decided upon by the Kabaka but handled by the protectorate government.
  • The Kabaka was not to form an army without the consent of the protectorate government.
  • Buganda’s boundaries were to be redefined and the two lost counties of Buyaga and Bugangaizi that previously belonged to Bunyoro were to be added to Buganda.
  • Buganda was to be divided into 20 counties each under a Ssaza or county chief.
  • In case of misunderstanding the terms of the agreement, the protectorate government had the right to abrogate or cancel the agreement.

Effects of the agreement

  • The Kabaka’s powers were greatly reduced e.g. he lost authority over the army and tax collection.
  • The agreement made Buganda part of Uganda and it placed Buganda at the same level with other provinces in Uganda.
  • The Kabaka lost control over his chiefs who became public servants and were paid by the protectorate government.
  • Buganda’s 20 counties were allocated on a religious basis i.e. protestants were given 10, Catholics got 8 and Moslems 2.
  • The agreement re-defined the boundaries of Buganda to include the two lost counties of Buyaga and Bugangaizi which were got from Bunyoro.
  • The loss of the two counties led/increased Bunyoro’s hostility to Buganda.
  • The Buganda agreement laid a foundation for the signing of similar agreements with others areas e.g. Toro agreement in June 1900, Ankole agreement 1901.
  • The agreement confirmed and formalized British rule over Buganda and Uganda as a whole which meant that Buganda had lost its independence.
  • The agreement encouraged the growing of cash crops like tea, coffee and cotton because people had to pay taxes.
  • The hut tax also forced people to crowd in one hut so as to avoid paying the tax and this led to the spread of diseases like dysentery.
  • The agreement began the exploitation of Uganda’s resources like minerals and forests as a way of raising funds for the protectorate government.
  • After the agreement, some Baganda decided to collaborate with the British to extend colonial rule in Uganda e.g. Semei Kakungulu and John Miti.
  • The agreement also encouraged the development of roads, schools, hospitals as a way of tapping Uganda’s economic potential.
  • The Kabaka lost control over the land in Buganda which increased on the number of white settlers grabbing land in Buganda.
  • The agreement ended the religious wars which had destabilized Buganda during the reign of Kabaka Mwanga.