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Committee Decisions

34 COM 7B.53

Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi (Uganda) (C 1022)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-10/34.COM/7B.Add,

2. Recalling that the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga building at Kasubi was an outstanding example of an architectural style developed by the Buganda Kingdom since the 13th century, due to its design and spatial organization, but also its elaboration and size,

3. Thanks the Director-General of UNESCO for having dispatched, immediately after the fire that resulted in the destruction of the property, a mission in April 2010 led by the World Heritage Centre and including experts from the African World Heritage Fund and CRATerre-ENSAG, with the primary objective to assess the extent of the damage, and discuss with the relevant authorities actions to be taken, including its possible reconstruction;

4. Takes note of the results of the 2010 mission, which observed that the entire Muzibu Azaala Mpanga building has been destroyed, and the wish of the State Party to undertake its reconstruction;

5. Considers that, with the unfortunate destruction of the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga, the property faces a serious deterioration of its architectural components and therefore meets the criteria for inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger as defined in Paragraph 179 of the Operational Guidelines;

6. Also considers that the reconstruction of the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga could be justified, provided, that the new structure is based on authenticity in design, materials, and techniques as well as continuing use; and that:

a) a clear rationale for the overall project is set out and agreed in advance that sets out the basis for the chosen approach,

b) due consideration is given to the various options, such as re-building as in 2010, 1938, 1911 or as in the 1880s, based on sound documentation and traditional materials and techniques,

7. Notes that the State Party has submitted a reconstruction strategy to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies and requests that no reconstruction work commences before this review is finalized;

8. Further considers that the reconstruction of Muzibu Azaala Mpanga without proper studies and the development of an agreed reconstruction strategy could impair the remaining Outstanding Universal Value of the property;

9. Considers moreover that the overall reconstruction of the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga building will need close monitoring through the Advisory Bodies and detailed documentation;

10. Encourages the State Party to appoint a site manager for the property and to establish a coordination mechanism which will enable the Buganda kingdom and other stakeholders to work together and share responsibilities during the reconstruction process;

11. Decides to inscribe the Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi (Uganda) on the List of World Heritage in Danger;

12. Also notes that the State Party has submitted to the World Heritage Centre the recently revised 2009-2015 management plan, and also requests the State Party to ensure its implementation in close collaboration with the main stakeholders of the property;

13. Further requests the State Party to invite, as soon as possible, a joint World Heritage Centre/ICCROM/ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission and the African World Heritage Fund to the property, to assess the state of conservation of the property, and develop, in cooperation with the State Party, the corrective measures to address the threats to the Outstanding Universal Value as well as a time frame for their implementation, a Desired State of Conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger, and to advise the stakeholders on the overall reconstruction of the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga;

14. Finally requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2011, a report on the state of conservation of the property, describing progress made in the reconstruction of the Muzibu Azaala Mpanga and in the implementation of the 2009-2015 management plan, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 35th session in 2011.

Themes: Conservation, List of World Heritage in Danger
States Parties: Uganda
Session: 34COM