Expelled Ugandan Asians reunite in Seven Kings

PUBLISHED: 18:21 14 November 2017 | UPDATED: 18:22 14 November 2017

Reunited Ugandan Asians dance to traditional Kakiran folk music in at Palmers Catholic Academy, Seven Kings. Photo: Parshotam Bhai Nakum

Reunited Ugandan Asians dance to traditional Kakiran folk music in at Palmers Catholic Academy, Seven Kings. Photo: Parshotam Bhai Nakum


More than 600 Uganda Asians, exiled 45 years ago by General Idi Amin, reunited in Seven Kings on Saturday.

The Uganda Asian reunion organising committee. Photo: Parshotam Bhai Nakum The Uganda Asian reunion organising committee. Photo: Parshotam Bhai Nakum

Members of the scattered diaspora travelled from Manchester, Birmingham, Southampton, Scotland and as far as way as Canada and the US.

Gants Hill resident Parshotam Bhai Nakum, 64, who was on the organising committee, described the atmosphere at the reunion.

He said: “It was an emotional feeling. I saw people coming in throwing up their hands and saying ‘wow!’

“There were people who were meeting for the first time since 1972.”

Demand to attend the reunion at Palmers Catholic Academy, in Aldborough Road South, Seven Kings, on Saturday was overwhelming, he added.

Event sponsors Madhvani Group, Uganda’s biggest sugar manufacturer, needed to hire an additional 100 chairs to guarantee all guests a seat.

Through the event Parshotam became reacquainted with his old next door neighbours, former schoolmates, his English and Maths School teacher Pritam Singh.

Reflecting on his relationship with his teacher, now 83 and living in Leeds, he said: “He was so strict. What he really taught us was discipline and my school mates and I really appreciated that.”

The event was a gathering of the former residents of the village of Kakira, near the town of Jinja in Southern Uganda, whose mostly originate from Gujarat, India.

Among the dignitaries in attendance were Ilford South MP Mike Gapes, Shailesh Vara MP for North West Cambridgeshire, also formerly from Kakira; and Julius Peter Moto, Uganda’s High Commissioner to the UK.

Food for the evening included a selection of curry dishes and samosas with entertainment provided by a Kakiran six-piece band that is now based in Redbridge.

They performed folk music which traditionally accompanies the Hindu celebration of Navratri, which takes place over nine nights in autumn each year.

Commenting on whether there are any plans for further reunions, he said: “The Facebook page is inundated with people congratulating us on the event.”

“They want us to organise another one. There is a lot of logistics involved so we will look at the finances and decide what to do next.”

Related articles

Latest Ilford Stories


Belgium and Tunisia have met on three previous occasions in all competitions, with a win apiece and a draw. The encounters have been tight affairs, with victories decided by one-goal margins, but today’s match didn’t follow the same trend.


A man who threatened a mum at knifepoint while she was dropping off her children at school in Seven Kings and pulled out a knife on a taxi driver in Ilford has been handed six years in prison.

Nottinghamshire required just an hour and three-quarters on the fourth morning of the Specsavers County Championship game at Chelmsford to remove the last six Essex wickets and claim victory.


Lakeside Hammers team boss Will Pottinger admits his side have “momentum” after a nail-biting away win at Scunthorpe on Friday night.


Gareth Southgate’s promising young England side look ready to make a mark on the world stage and help atone for the disappointments of recent tournaments.


A 21-year-old man has been injured after a brawl in Gants Hill.

Just over five years ago, the Ilford Recorder ran a front page article with the headline “Police swoop on the homeless taking sleeping bags and food parcels in co-ordinated raids in Redbridge”.

Yesterday, 19:15

Essex (206 & 88-4) trail Nottinghamshire (380 & 266) by 352 runs


An Ilford shoe retailer and podiatry practice is taking the next step with a move to a new shop just a few doors down.

Redbridge estate agents Sandra Davidson answer the common questions homeowners have when it comes to selling their home, and reveals how you can make sure the sale is stress-free

Redbridge Estate agents Sandra Davidson’s hassle-free service guarantees rental income for your property, whether it is occupied or not. Here they share details of the Guaranteed Rent Scheme and how it can help you avoid the regular stresses associated with managing a let.

Newsletter Sign Up

Ilford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Ilford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now