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Ankole (Runyankore: Nkore), was a traditional Bantu kingdom in Uganda. The kingdom is located in south-western Uganda, east of Lake Edward. It was ruled by a monarch known as the Mugabe or Omugabe. The kingdom was formally abolished in 1967 by the government of President Milton Obote, and since then, the kingdom has not been restored officially.[2] The people of Ankole are called Banyankole (singular: Munyankole) in Runyankole language, a Bantu language.

Kingdom of Ankole

Obugabe Bw'Ankole  (Nyankole)
Flag of Ankole
Coat of arms of Ankole
Coat of arms
Location of Ankole (red) in Uganda (pink).
Location of Ankole (red) in Uganda (pink).
Common languagesRunyakole
Ethnic groups
GovernmentConstitutional monarchy
• Omugabe
Prince Charles Rwebishengye
• Enganzi
• Established
• Disestablished
• Total
16,104 km2 (6,218 sq mi)
• Estimate
4.1 Million
CurrencyUganda Shillings (UGX)
Time zoneUTC+3 (EAT)
Calling code256

On 25 October 1901, the Kingdom of Nkore was incorporated into the British Protectorate of Uganda by the signing of the Ankole agreement.[3]

Because of the reorganisation of the country by Idi Amin, Ankole no longer exists as an administrative unit. It is divided into ten districts, namely: Bushenyi District, Buhweju District, Mitooma District, Rubirizi District, Sheema District, Ntungamo District, Mbarara District, Kiruhura District, Ibanda District, and Isingiro District.


Map depicting the Kingdom of Ankole

Ankole Kingdom is located in the South-Western region of Uganda bordering Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo

List of Omugabe of AnkoleEdit

Omugabe Gasyonga of Ankore

Nkole peopleEdit

Nkole people are a Bantu ethnic group native to Uganda. They primarily inhabit Ankole. They are closely related to other Bantu peoples of the region, namely the Nyoro, Kiga, Toro and Hema peoples. Their population is 4,187,445(9.8% of Uganda). There are several names they are referred to as. These include the following ones: Ankole, Ankori, Banyankole, Banyankore, Nkoles, Nkore, Nyankole, Nyankore, Ouanyankori, Runyankole, Runyankore, Uluyankole, Uluyankore. The Nkole speak Orunyankore, a Great Lakes Bantu language. There were an estimated 2.3 million native speakers in 2002.

Ankole historyEdit

Bairu and Bahima clansEdit

Banyankore trace their ancestors back to the Bairu and the Bahima subgroup.[4]

Kingdom abolishedEdit

The kingdom was abolished in 1967 by the Ugandan government under president Apollo Milton Obote.[4]

Counties of Nkole (Amashaza)Edit

Nkore Kingdom was divided into ten counties. These counties are now divided into various political constituencies. But the original ten counties of Nkore include:

Nkole calendarEdit

Runyakore Calendar: English to Runyakore Translation

The Nkore calendar was divided into 12 months. They were named according to weather conditions and activities done in that period. They include:

  • Biruuru
  • Kaatambuga
  • Katumba
  • Nyeikoma
  • Kyabahezi
  • Kahingo
  • Nyeirurwe
  • Kamena
  • Kicuransi
  • Kashwa
  • Museenene
  • Muzimbezi


  1. ^ Briggs, Philip; Roberts, Andrew (5 November 2016). Uganda. Bradt Travel Guides. p. 534. ISBN 9781784770228. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
  2. ^ The Observer Media Ltd. :: The Weekly Observer :: Uganda's Top Resource site Archived 3 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ The Ankole Agreement 1901
  4. ^ a b "Runyakore History and Culture" (PDF). Runyakore L&C. 26 January 2021.

External linksEdit