Prince Hosea Akiiki Nyabongo, son of Omukama Daudi Kyebambe Kasagama, and brother to Omukama George Kamurasi Rukidi III, was a living legend among the batooro. Having preferred an academic career, later public service, to the pampered life of the princes of his time, he spent a major part of his life in institutions of higher learning both in the United States and the United Kingdom. Long before many batooro had grasped the concept of an academic degree, Prince Akiiki Nyabongo had earned several of them.
He earned a Masters degree from Harvard University, in the U.S.A., and a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the prestigious Oxford University, in the United Kingdom. He was a professor at the University of Alabama, back in the 1940's, and later at North Carolina A & T University, where he taught Philosophy. He was among the brave breed of African writers who were not afraid to express their views on the short comings of colonialism and their support of the ideals of Pan Africanism.
Among Dr. Nyabongo's close associates were noted Pan Africanists like Dr. DuBois, Padmore, Garvey, and Nkrumah. He was also a close associate of Johnson (Jomo) Kenyatta, then a student at the London School of Economics. Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, as he later came to be affectionately called by his people, went on to become Kenya's first president. He was friends with Dr. John Henrik Clarke, a noted Pan African Historian and scholar, Dr. Yosef Ben Jochanan, scholar and Pan Africanist, as well as Paul Robeson, human rights activist and entertainer.
In 1955, Dr. Akiiki Nyabongo married Ms Ada Naomi Paynter. She was the daughter of an A.M.E. minister. She was born in Bermuda and raised in New York. She, too, was an educator, and shared Dr. Nyabongo's passion for Pan Africanism. They were blessed with a son, Prince Amooti Nyabongo Kyebambe Mukarusa.
His extended stay in foreign lands did not, in the least, douse his enthusiasm and appetite for his own cultural heritage. He remained a true son of Toro at heart, and was proud of this fact. He published a number of literary works on African culture in general and kitooro culture in particular. He was very proud of his impeccable Rutooro, even after several decades of having no one to speak it with. He wrote a collection of kitooro legends and mythologies.
Dr. Akiiki Nyabongo spent his later years in dedicated service to his country of birth, Uganda. He served as the Chairman of the Uganda Town and Country Planning Board until he departed this world on October 3, 1975.
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