At least 332 million shillings was collected both in cash and pledges at a fundraising for the Bishop’s Annual Appeal Fund (BAAF) for Rukungiri district intended for the establishment of St. Ignatius University Kabale, a function that was held at Nyakibale parish on Saturday, October 28, 2023. Rt. Rev. Callist Rubaramira, Bishop of Kabale Diocese expressed gratitude to the Guest of Honour, other invited guests and all the people of God for the support and contributions made so that St. Ignatius University Kabale could start officially. He used the same occasion to remind people that Kabale Diocese decided that BAAF be conducted on district level and that Kanungu district would hold theirs on Sunday, November 5, 2023 at Our Lady of Fatima Makiro Parish. BAAF 2023 will be concluded with climax on Saturday, November 25, 2023 at Our Lady of Good Shepherd Rushoroza Cathedral and all that will have been collected from all the districts will be handed over to St. Ignatius University Kabale.
Mr. Wenceslaus Maanige, chariman of BAAF Rukungiri district thanked all the people that attended the ceremony and announced that Rukungiri district was to raise 450 million shillings. He was grateful that 332 million was so raised on that fundraising day and urged people to continue mobilizing funds so that their target for the district is hit before the climax
Dr. Peter Ngategize, chairman of the Appointments and Welfare Committee of the University Governing Council informed members that BAAF started in 2009 after Bishop Callist Rubaramira had sent a team of people from Kabale Diocese to benchmark from Ssabasumba Annual Appeal Fund (SAAF) which was running in Kampala Archdiocese under His Grace Cyprian Kizito Lwanga (RIP). From 2009-2013, funds were raised to construct a commercial house in Kabale town. Then a commercial house was constructed in Kisoro town in 2015 to house Centenary Bank, renovation of Rushoroza Cathedral in 2016, Establishment of Radio Maria in 2017, investment in Centenary Bank by purchasing of more shares in 2018, construction of Centenary Bank Regional offices in Kabale in 2021, Construction of commercial building to house Centenary Bank Rukungiri in 2022 and now establishment of St. Ignatius University Kabale in 2023. Dr. Ngategize thanked all the people of good will who are contributing generously towards the establishment of the university. He announced that Dr. Catherine Promise Biira was appointed as the University Secretary and would be reporting on November 1, 2023.
Prof. Maxmiano Ngabirano the Vice Chancellor of St. Ignatius University thanked Kabale Diocese for donating 10 acres of land in Kitumba Sub County to the University for the Department of agriculture where demonstration projects will be undertaken since the university is a distinct one to provide hands-on skills and courses.
Speaking as Chief Guest, Rtd. Major General Jim Muhwezi Katugugu, legislator for Rujumbura County in Rukungiri and Minister for Security thanked Bishop Callist Rubaramira for his visionary leadership. He also thanked him for the idea of starting a university and pledged to lobby for and keep supporting St. Ignatius University Kabale. He contributed 10 million shillings cash and presented another 10 million shillings from his friends.
Other prominent individuals who attended the BAAF function included Hon. Natukunda Medius Kaharata (Woman MP Rukungiri district), Hon Betty Bamukwasa Muzanira (former woman MP Rukungiri), Hon. Mary Paula Turyahikayo (former MP for Rubabo constituency) among others.