Ugandan Diaspora News | Letter from the Editor | April 2013 | Spring Forward
The time to “spring forward” has come for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, as we adjust our clocks, adding an hour of daylight to most people’s schedule. Originally conceived as a way to save energy, there are conflicting views and studies concerning the benefits derived from the time change and its impact on our circadian rhythms (the scientific term for our “body clock” and how it is affected by light).
Last month we witnessed the inauguration of a new Pontiff, Pope Francis I, who chose his name after Francis of Assisi, the much-loved Italian patron saint. St. Francis, who shunned opulence, led a monastic life, loved nature and founded the Order of Franciscans to serve the poor, is certainly an inspiring namesake.
Many are the challenges facing the Roman Catholic Church. Much as Francis is said to have been called on by God to repair a church in ruins. the inspiring namesake could reflect the desire of the Pope to bring serenity to the troubled institution as many of its 1.2 billion followers have called for institutional reforms.
Exciting news coming out of Uganda this past month–the government has proposed building a new city at Karuma. This is a development I think has been long overdue, given the lack of planning and resulting chaos that has enveloped Metropolitan Kampala over the years. I always thought Nakasongola was ideal, given its centrality, but Karuma would be an even better location, with its proximity to the Nile, the proposed Karuma dam and Murchison Falls National Park. Build a modern airport there and Eastern Congo and Southern Sudan would benefit along with regional centers like Arua, Gulu, Lira and Masindi. With proper project management Kampala could remain a commercial capital, similar to what Nigeria did when Lagos was made a commercial capital and the administrative capital was moved to Abuja.
Other news from Africa: in Kenya Raila Odinga, long favored to succeed President Mwai Kibaki, saw a spirited campaign marred by tribalism and regionalism that cost him the election to Uhuru Kenyatta. The Supreme Court, despite some voting irrregularities that took place, has not overturned the outcome and the rule of law has prevailed in what was a heated contest between the sons of founding fathers Jomo Kenyatta and Jamarogi Oginga Odinga. But just when you may have thought that military coups and takeovers were a thing of the past, Central Africa’s François Bozizé, after 10 years as president, was overthrown by rebel forces in the capital Bangui.
In the US, the Supreme Court has been debating and hearing arguments on the Defense of Marriage Act, which does not allow same-sex marriage. This has remained a thorny and divisive issue for many in the US. I find it strange that while this type of civil union still faces resistance in the US, US foreign policy has been trying to influence choices on the issue especially in Africa.
The Boston Ugandan Diaspora Business Expo slated for July 6th is rapidly taking shape — all roads will be leading to the Boston Marriott in Burlington. Here is why you need to be in Boston. It is estimated that up to 20,000 Ugandans call the Bay State and New England home. For those looking to sell or buy property back home this would present a unique investment opportunity. Bankers, property managers, investment advisers and a host of other business leaders from Uganda led by Prof. Maggie Kigozi will be in attendance.
For those looking to expand on their networks, particularly regarding opportunities in Business, Energy, Health, Education, Investment, Trade and Tourism, the event has also catered for you, with a great evening entertainment line-up to boot. This red carpet affair should be uniquely spectacular! Vendor and Magazine space is available for purchase. A special discounted room rate has also been negotiated. http://www.ugandandiasporanews.com/2013/03/27/the-burlington-marriott-hotel-to-host-first-boston-ugandan-diaspora-business-expo-saturday-6th-july-2013/
“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.”
–Alexander Graham Bell
Lastly, our esteemed readers, remember that your comments following the editorial and articles are especially welcome. Let us know that you are out there and you appreciate our small contribution in helping to tell our stories in the Diaspora!
MSc. Comm – Boston University
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