The first SDA missionaries came to Uganda in 1920. They were refused to operate in Buganda on grounds that the three denominations already exisitng were enough, that is Church Missionary Society (CMS/Protestants), Roman Catholics and Islam. They made the second attempt in 1927

and were denied entry on the same ground. They were advised to try else where in Bunyoro. The two missionaries were S.G. Maxwell and Petero Risasi. They set off for Bunyoro then they made a stop over at Busimbi in Mityana.

They spent a night at Anania Gugwa’s home. While Maxwell proceded to Mubende, Risasi stayed back preaching. He was able to win Simon Golola, his brother Henry Guweddeko and a blind friend Joshua Kiddawalime. Kiddawalime accepted to be baptised and was taken to Mubende for baptism as the first Adventist in Uganda. A church was set up at Busimbi with other members like Yobu Musokota and his family, Eriya Kiwanuka and Kyeyune ecetra. It is this team that saw the need to establish a school at Nchwanga in 1937 with the primary and the teacher training section. Mr. Simon

Golola joined Mr. Razimuson as a tutor. The headmasters were Pederson Lind and Goodmanson (SP) 1942.

The other instructors were Mr. Basulwa Eriabu, Mr. Muwanga Onesmas who also worked as a farm manager and Mr. Musoke Aaron.

Some of the students were Mr. Joseph Matovu, Wilson Tamale Kasozi and Kawooya. When they completed P.6, they transfered to Mukono to do J1, J2, and J3. It is Mr. Matovu and Mr. Kasozi who managed to qualify to go for teacher training. Mr. S.B. Kyambadde was selected to replace Kawooya after completion of the course they were posted as follows: Wilson Tamale Kasozi to Bugema, S.B. Kyambadde to Kakoro and Matovu to Nawanende. Nchwanga used a semester system of education and they produced there food

from the farm.


In the early 40’s the S.D.A church leadership at Uganda Field, together with the school leadership voted to transfer the school to a new site called Bugema, located 20 Mls or 32 Kms from Kampala in Kalagala sub-county, Bulemeezi county (Luwero county) in Buganda kingdom. Bugema was identified by Pr. Lind and Pr. Dennis Bazarra. The sum of two thousand Uganda shillings that bought the one square mile of land was donated by a good Samartan by a Noregian. The reasons for the transfer could be multiple but the most outstanding one is that of Bugema’s proximity to Kampala.

By 1946 and 1947 arrangements were in full gear to put up the necessary infrastructure for the school to begin. Bugema was officially opened on 25th Febraury 1948 under the leadership of principal Andrews (USA). The pioneer teachers were, Mr. and Mrs. Van Kirk (SA) and Ugandans : Mr. G.B.Mugerwa, Medad Musisi and Mr. Erisa Mafabi. They were later joined by Mr. and Mrs. Marx (SA) and Mr. Wilson Tamale Kasozi a grade II teacher from Bishop Tucker college, Mukono and in 1949 by Mr. Eridad Mwanje Mwesige as a parttime teacher. 

The school opened with four classes, with the following students ;

Primary four (P IV): Geresomu Awuye, Matovu, Igulu Kafuko.

Primary five (P V) :Seezi Lubega ,Yasoni Okarujja Mbayo the father to madam Deborah Akatekit .

Primary six ( P VI) Enoka Otukol Berero, Mako Lwanga, Abusolomu, Ndyanabo, Sebowa, Kayole, Sewanyana, Ngobi, & Hannington Nsubuga.

Junior secondary one (JI): Bataire, Idude Isabirye, N. Onyango (K),

Agar Omolo, Tobian Otieno, & Nyagaka Nyawere all Kenyans.

In 1950, Bugema school was renamed Bugema Missionary College (BMC) when Mr. C.T.J Hyde was the Principal. BMC officially presented candidates for the Junior Leaving Certificate of Uganda in the same year. The college also graduated two vernacular teachers by the names of Mr. Kazibira and Mr. Abusolomu Ndyanabo, trained by Mr. Wilson Tamale Kasozi. The second batch of J.L.C candidates was presented in 1951.

In 1952, the second batch of the vernacular teachers was admitted consisting of. G. Awuye Wakabi and Gideon Gwanga.

The junior section was at full capacity with students: Zerubaberi Ochen (Teso), Ayeni Mugunde, Zakayo Chesoni (Kenyan) and Mr. Ongeri (Kenyan). By then, the arrangement of the education

system was P1 – P8, then junior one to junior 3.

In 1953, a senior secondary class was added. In 1954 seven (7) students joined, sec V then to sec VI in 1955.The outstanding teachers and auxiliary staff were:-

» Mr. J.F. Clifford (SA) -Math, Wood Work &Bio.

» Miss Eckerman (USA)- Geo. In 1954

» Mr. Kuckarzik Elderberg- English

» Prof. Oakes joined 1954- Biology

» Mrs. Oakes 1954-Health Science. She opened the Bugema Health Unit 1954

» Mr. Wilson Tamale Kasozi -Luganda and Religion

» Mr. Pursely (USA) – History

» Mr, Eridad Mwanje Mwesige – S4. Bible

The other supporting staff who joined subsequently were:

» Yason Walusimbi – Tractor driver, Water tank technician.

» Isirayiri Lwasa and Ndege – Chief cooks.

» Yovani Musoke – Carpenter and Builder.

» Carpenters: Mr. Gaphisi |Mr. Mutabazi Enos

» Medical workers: Mr. Joseph Zirimwabagabo |Mr. Lubega

|Mr. Charles Sebakigye |Mr. Kanyankole


»Wilson Sewakuba

» Isaaya Baruuli

» Yusufu (Joseph) Matovu

» Andrew Were

» Ndyanabo Abusolom

» Naimuli

» Ageru Amosi

» Sekayita George

» Kintu Joel

» Baleeta John

» Sessanga Sekatuba Astronomer (Lay)


  1. Thomas Liso (Tanzania). He joined Solusi College and become a prominent politician in Tanzania
  2. Mr. Sezi Lubega. He joined Kyambogo N.T.C, graduating with a diploma in Education. He taught in several government schools before joining B.A.C to teach Biology. He taught the author of this book. He married Miss Dorcus Kayira, an Alumnea from Nazigo -Bugerere. He returned to the USA, read his PHD and become a Prof. of Embryology at Oakwood College in Albama- Thank God, for he is still alive.
  3. Mr. Lutaya. He joined the ministry of foreign affairs in the 1950s..
  4. Mr. Wambulwa (Kenyan), he became a prominent graduate social worker in Kenya.
  5. Mr. Edward Kayole. He hails from Katikamu – Wobulenzi in the family of the Late Chief Zakayo Kisozi. He trained as a medical worker and he runs a clinic in Lugazi town council.
  6. Mr. Joseph Ngila. A Keyan from Ukamba land, obtained the Ms degree, became a Principal of Kamagambo Teachers College and finally become the President of the East African Union in 1989.
  7. Mr. Joshua Gwalamubisi from Kyagwe – Namulesa, joined Solusi College for Theological Training, Then he came back to Bugema Adventists College as a teacher for Religion. Then, He went to the USA to read his Masters and PHD. He came back and served as Principal till he left Uganda

because of political instabilit during Idd Amin’s regime. He kept visiting Uganda, married an Alumnaea Ms Esther Balambi daughter of Mr. Mutajemerwa of Kiwamirembe Church -Kikyusa, Wabusana . He died on 06.11.2016.

  1. ENOKA OTUKOL the main contributor of this synoptic history hails form Pallisa in Eastern Uganda. He trained as a teacher in Kyambogo NTTC and taught Mathematics at Kachonga Secondary School 1958. He joined Makerere University 1961-1962 read Math. 1964, served as H/M Kisoko S.S. 1967, and joined Makerere university for a Bachelors Degree. In 1968-1971, he taught Economics and

Math in Mbale S.S.

In 1980-1991, he served as H/M Kakoro S.D.A S.S and become a member of the East Africa Division Committee (EAD) 1986 – 1989. In 1992-1994, he served as the Education Director – Eastern Uganda Field. In 2007, he served as a the chairperson, Pallisa District Services Committee.

He sired the following children that served Bugema Adventist Secondary School diligently: Mrs. Racheal Au- rugai- Geography,

Mr.Salongo John Onyait, Dean of boys (Preceptor), Mr. Tom Oling’a Otukol read Bachelor and Masters from MUK. Taught Geography, Physic Educ. At BASS and is currently lecturing at

Bugema University and many distinguished progenies.

  1. Haggai Rewe – a Kenyan
  2. Smuts Guweddeko son of Pr. Guweddeko the 1st S.D.A converts in Uganda. He joined Uganda Army, and trained as a Jet Fighter Pilot. He served under President Milton Obotes 1st Government 1962-1971. By the time of his death, he had reached a status of Brigadier.He is presumed

to have been killed by Idd -Amin’s Regime. 11. Mr. Nsubuga Hannington (now a Prof.) qualified as a teacher at Kyambogo N.T.T.C, then went for further studies in the USA. He joined Makerere University, Faculty of Education -read for PHD, served in the same department and also served as Vice chancellor Ndejje Christian University and VC Avance University.

  1. John George William Charles Sserwadda. He attaended Nchwanga School from P.1 to P.6 in 1946, then came back to Bugema. He went to Buddo, then got a scholarship to Manchester University for Economics, then to the London School of Economics (MSc.) He came back and served as

Assistant Secretary to the Governor, Commissioner for Budgetory 2 years in World Bank, 17 yers in the office of President Museveni and also sereved in International Monitory Fund and is retired.

By the years 1960-1966, Bugema had the following sections. Primary 1 – p.6 in the two (2) grass thatched buildings, at the current BU Basketball pitch. Junior 1 and J.II in the current BU Computer laboratory (west wing) and on the tiled main block. Senior 1 – IV in the remaining classes on tiled main block.

The small rooms served administrative offices (Principal, Registrar, Business office).

Bugema’s name had also been changing from Bugema Missionary College to Bugema Adventist College ( BAC) to Bugema Adventist Secondary School (BASS). In 1967 Junior one

and junior two were removed. The P VI leavers and the junior one leavers all joined senior one. It was quite challenging but we managed to compete favorably by God’s Grace.

One of the most memorable S.4 class sat in 1970. It had two sections: S.4C (Commerce) and S.4M (Math). This class had some of the common faces in church and E.A service e.g Ephraim Semaku- la (Hodge), Eng. Venant Gashija, Proff R.T, Mugerwa, Musa Kato, Musoke (Mr.Agric), Mr. Joseph Kalungi, Mrs. Molly Rutagarama, Milly Nakaliri etc, Namusisi

Rebecca , ref, to the 1970 Photo Album.