English Français

Kibiro (Salt producing village)

Date of Submission: 10/09/1997
Criteria: (i)(iii)(iv)(v)
Category: Cultural
Submitted by:
Department of Antiquities and Museums
Coordinates: Kigorobya sub-county, Hoima District Lat. 1°41' N ; Long. 31°15' E
Ref.: 912
Export
Word File Word File
Disclaimer

The Tentative Lists of States Parties are published by the World Heritage Centre at its website and/or in working documents in order to ensure transparency, access to information and to facilitate harmonization of Tentative Lists at regional and thematic levels.

The sole responsibility for the content of each Tentative List lies with the State Party concerned. The publication of the Tentative Lists does not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever of the World Heritage Committee or of the World Heritage Centre or of the Secretariat of UNESCO concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its boundaries.

Property names are listed in the language in which they have been submitted by the State Party

Description

Kibiro salt producing village demonstrates a unique example of an industry which has sustained its people for eight to nine hundred years ago and continues to do so perhaps for posterity from fishing on Lake Albert, the people of Kibiro have depended on the production of ash salt which is obtained by recycling residual earth with fresh soil which is spread on salt gardens for the salty water to get absorbed by capillary system. Through repeated scraping, spreading and heaping of the salty soil over a seven days period, it is leached and the scam is boilt to crystallisation point to produce the ash salt. The residual soil from leaching is then mixed with fresh soil to repeat the salt production process.

Salt production was and is a female hereditary occupation. Before the introduction of metallic vessels, pottery ware was used during the leaching and boiling processes and this is evidenced by the rich archaeological depositions of potsherds throughout the village going as deep as 4 metres and dating to between eight and nine hundred years to the present. Kibiro village is a sandy beach along Lake Albert where food does not grow. The Kibiro population therefore have depended for its livehood on the exchange of salt and fish for food through time with farming communities on the platea above the Ugandan side of the Western Rift Valley. The village therefore forms an important cultural site which has combined both archaeology and ethnography through time in the production of ash salt.