Do you remember the time I asked a question about colonialism?

Well, we are sharing about a girl I got to love and admire so much.


Photo credit: The African Exponent


Many people know her as “Queen Muhumuza”. Others call her “Muhumsa”, as well as “Nyiragahumusa”.

Muhumusa is said to have been a medium of the spirit of a legendary African woman, known as Nyabinghi (also spelled Nyabingi and Nyabyinshi).


Sultanin Mumusa. Quelle: Weiß, Max. Die Völkerstämme im Norden Deutsch-Ostafrikas. Berlin: Carl Marschner, 1910., S.64


According to some Rwandan sources, her original name was Muserakande, and she was married to and had a son named Biregeya with Kigeri Rwabugiri, the King of Rwanda from 1867 to 1895.

Following Rwabugiri’s death in 1895 and the coup at Rucunshu in 1896, which was orchestrated by Rwabugiri’s favourite wife, Kanjogera, to overthrow his chosen successor, Rutarindwa, and enthrone her son, Musinga, Muserakande allegedly fled north to Mpororo with her son to escape massacre.


Photo credit: everlivingroots


According to Wikipedia,

By claiming spiritual authority through Nyabinghi, Muhumusa was able to rally the Abakiga people of northern Rwanda behind her to challenge to Musinga’s claim to the throne.

Over the next few years, she raised armies and organised a series of insurrections aimed at enthroning her son, Biregeya, who she claimed was Rwabugiri’s legitimate successor.

She also encouraged her followers to pay tribute to her, rather than Musinga’s court.

In response, Musinga asked the German colonisers for help defeating Muhumusa’s movement.


Photo credit: The African History


The Germans arrested her in 1908 for ‘witchcraft’ and imprisoned her in Bukoba until her escape in 1911.

Once again, she fled north where she began rallying her supporters, but this time in defiance of the German and British colonisers who were laying claim to the region, in collaboration with an umutwa leader named Basebya.

They were behind the first armed resistances against colonisation in the region, with Muhumusa encouraging their followers not to fear European guns because Nyabinghi would turn the Europeans’ bullets into water.

Muhumusa’s rebellion created a great deal of concern among the European colonisers in the region, and well as the European missionaries who were attempting to spread Christianity, prompting the Germans and British to join forces.

On September 29, 1911, they surrounded Muhumusa’s forces and, after a short battle, arrested her.

The British escorted her to Kampala, where they kept her under house arrest until her death in 1945.


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What a leader Queen Muhumuza was!

A rebel, a strategist and militant at heart!

Girl, your bravery and assertiveness will never go unappreciated!

I celebrate you and love you nyo nyo nyo!