In northern Uganda, 32 km out of Gulu town lies a beautiful place with a rich but heartbreaking history. The story of Fort Patiko is one that tells of the inhumane acts of mankind.
When we got off the Uganda Wildlife bus for our final stop of the Tulambule Northern Uganda tour, I was completely clueless about Fort Patiko but the signpost tried to shed some light.
As I took in this spectacular rocky view, my ears were focused on what our guide was saying. “This was a collection ground of slaves. The strong and beautiful ones were forced to trek all the way to Egypt while the weak were killed off.”
Just as my heart began to break into pieces, the guide assured us that the ground is spiritual so therefore no one should make love on it. Guys! My heartache had to wait and I burst out in laughter. Like seriously, had this guy seen the scorching sun or how beat we were? But oh well, I guess some people are always up for the challenge. 😅
When we walked through the gates of no return (slaves never made it out once they got in), I wondered why I knew so little about this place, was there a class that I missed in school or did the teachers rush through it? Such a rich story in our backyard but so little is known about it, why?
After climbing up a few rocks our guide showed us some of the places where hundreds of slaves were forced to sleep. They were chained up and put in the tiniest of spaces under rocks. No, they didn’t have mattresses, some of them slept on bare rocks. So you can imagine what they had to endure on that long trek to Egypt.
The rocky terrain created some wishful thinking, several people wanted to recreate the famous scene from Lion King where Rafiki is holding up Simba for the whole kingdom to see, but who would do the carrying? T
I have met several people who are enthusiastic and so optimistic but I have never met anyone like Golola. Every challenge we threw at him, he would try to at least prove us wrong; this ninja tried to lift a rock which was gazillion tonnes. He was always up for the challenge and if people weren’t too scared of falling, he could have been the Rafiki to our Lion King.
Uganda is called the Pearl of Africa for a reason, there is so much about this country’s beauty that will leave you amazed. There is no true king of the north (I’m not talking about Jon Snow), every place we visited from Murchison Falls National Park to Aruu Falls and lastly Fort Patiko, left me ecstatic.