Popular singer Jose Chameleone is slated to lead a team of Ugandan tour and travel enthusiasts on a five-day tourism excursion to northern Uganda.
Dubbed ‘Explore North’, the tour scheduled for May 30 to June 3 is organized by the ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities.
Chameleone will be joined by other celebrities such as comedian, Teacher Mpamiire and kickboxer, Moses Golola. During the launch of the campaign at Sheraton Hotel in Kampala, Chameleone who referred to himself as a paramount entertainer and one of the biggest tourist attractions of Uganda in music, said he was super excited to be part of exploring Uganda.
He said even though he has been travelling across Uganda for the last 20 years to perform, he has never had a chance to tour it.
“I am proud to be associated with the tourism of my country, and I want to be of very good value by inviting my fellow Ugandans to understand that Uganda is the pearl of Africa with a lot of beauties that we need to explore together. We are all assets to this country that should add value to it by attracting people to come see it,” he said.
The hitmaker added that since the people of the north are his in-laws because they gave him a beautiful wife (Daniella Atim), this is his chance to showcase the beautiful northern Uganda to the world.
“People think when you go to explore the north, you are going to Murchison Falls to see just the animals, but I think we have more to showcase with the cultures and communities. I want to assure you that I am a music attraction personally, and if you doubt that, I will be performing at Club BJz in Gulu City,” added Chameleone.
Comedian Teacher Mpamiire who is known for his "what went wrong" phrase and viral social media clips, said this is a great opportunity for him to teach about Uganda and what went right.
“What went right is what we are going to explore in northern Uganda. In northern Uganda, I will be able to go on the streets and ask people what tourism is all about,” he said.
Daniel Irunga, the head of marketing at Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) said they have brought Chameleone on board because he is energetic, a true Ugandan icon and a reminder of how Uganda is the entertainment capital of Africa. On the other hand, Teacher Mpamiire is expected to teach Ugandans more about the history of Fort Patiko in Gulu and tales of Gipir and Labongo in Packwach.
According to the ministry, the ‘Explore North’ campaign is aimed at creating awareness of the various potentially untapped prized tourism sites and attractions strewn across the northern countryside and neighbouring places as part of the synergies to encourage domestic tourism in Uganda as a strategy for tourism recovery post-Covid 19 pandemic and the Ebola epidemic.
The state minister of Tourism, Martin Mugarra said that tourism was the biggest sector bringing in forex in the country prior to Covid-19 and after the pandemic, they saw the importance to push the drive to market Uganda to the domestic market for Ugandans to travel and explore their country.
“The only way we can have a more resilient sector that in case foreigners cannot come into the country to support the sector, is to have Ugandans travel. Prior to Covid, the number of Ugandans visiting our tourism sites was around 132,000 but by the end of last year, we had around 890,000 Ugandans and by the end of this year we hope to hit one million,” said Mugarra.
During this excursion, travellers will have a chance to tour, explore and experience various places and lifestyles such as the Karuma Falls, Fort Patiko in Gulu, Aruu Falls in Pader, climb the Ajul rock, Gulu nightlife experience, cultural traditions of the Acholi, Gipir and Labongo origin, Murchison Falls on river Nile and game drive in Murchison Falls national park, visit the Polish site in Masindi and chimpanzee trekking in Budongo forest.