It was pomp and color at the coronation ceremony of Papa Paul Sande Emolot as the third Emorimor who officially now replaces Papa Augustine Lemukol Osuban who held the seat since 1998 until he passed on early this year.
The ceremony which was expected to start at 11 o’clock began nearly three hours later when His Highness Paul Sande Emolot and his entourage arrived shortly after 2:00pm with security befitting that of a king.
With a lot jubilation from his subjects and a combined security of the Uganda People’s Defense Forces (UPDF) Uganda Police and royal guards, the Cultural leader was received by the six clan heads that represent thousands of other sub clans and taken to a symbolic hut of his father before being coronated.
Gabriel Epolot, the Cultural Unions Minister for Information and Culture says “Without this hut, coronation cannot take place” For it symbolizes the life with which the Papa Emorimor was raised up by his father and moulded into a leader.
The blue eyed boys and the defensive antics of the royal guards ensured no one captured what was transpiring inside the hut. Later the clan heads began carrying one by one the artifacts to the place of coronation. Not a single other person was allowed to touch it. He was later taken to the inauguration tent.
The coronation of the third Emorimor began with the clan heads spreading Emuria grass on the cow hide, to symbolize the expected growth of the numbers of his subjects.
After the clan heads conferred authority to the new cultural leader, Papa Paul Sande Emolot received the symbols of power including but not limited to a spear, shield, fly whisk, hoe, a fire stool from his father Mzee Grado Oinamakol. Later the cultural leaders’ wife “Akaliat” received from the mother Margaret Idule the winnower, a pot, a tool for making traditional soda ash, a guard, a grinding stone and a mortar and pestle for pounding groundnuts.
The religious leaders led by Rt. Rev Dr. Nicodemus Okile later dedicated the Iteso unifier to the hands of God. Rev Dr. Okile urged the New Emorimor to be a unifier of the entire Ateker. He urged Emorimor to forget the past and have an all inclusive government and value humans as the first resource.
“Use the intellectuals so as to help you to plan, research and to construct structures as you shall be administering them harmoniously,” he added.
While addressing his subjects, Papa Emorimor thanked the government of Uganda for ensuring that the coronation went on as it was planned. He thanked the entire Iteso community for trusting him with the leadership of Ateker. He said he will closely work with the government to ensure his subjects benefit as much from the government projects.
Contrarily to what was said by some speakers, His Highness says he enjoys a close working relationship with government.
The Kenyan delegation was led to the coronation by the Busia County Governor Dr. Paul Nyongesa Otuoma who said he is proud to be associated with Papa Emorimor. He also conveyed President Wiliam Ruto’s message of gratitude and success towards the occasion and the leadership which Emorimor is going to provide to the Iteso Community not only in Uganda but East Africa and beyond.