Ugandan Diaspora News | Letter from the Editor | December 2014 | Happy Holidays

Posted December 2, 2014 by Ugandan Diaspora News Team in Editorial ~ 3,898 views



Greetings Folks and welcome to December,

The month that marks the Christmas shopping season for those here in the Northern Hemisphere starts on Black Friday, as the day after Thanksgiving (the last Thursday of November) is referred to in the US, as more and more people thirst for consumer goods. Someone once once described the shopping habits of most Americans as follows: “Buying what they don’t need with money they do not have, hence digging deeper into credit card debt” — I couldn’t have put it any better!

December, besides being the Christmas season, also commemorates World AIDS Day, an opportunity to raise awareness and unite against a virus that has affected nearly every family in my native country of Uganda. According to new statistics infection is now on the rise as complacency sets in especially among the married couples. In the US it is estimated that 1.2 million people are living with AIDS while in Africa the numbers especially in Eastern and Southern African have spiked.
On the political scene come December 15th at Namboole Stadium the NRM party will hold its long awaited delegates’ conference. This following the untimely departure of the once all-powerful “super” minister and NRM secretary general, there is talk that the NRM SG position will now be an appointment by the president and no longer an electable position by the delegates. This move has left many party faithful divided, as they see more and more attempts to ring fence the presidency and push through the sole candidacy agenda. What is particularly noteworthy has been the process and manner in which this whole sole candidacy scheme/political maneuvering has been forced through especially following the Kyankwanzi meet. It’s now clear that substance and debate have now replaced by loyalty to the Supreme leader or party chairman as some NRM delegates position themselves for the next cabinet reshuffle in the bid to ensure their political survival. The saddest part according to some pundits is that Uganda has rulers and not leaders!
One may recall Joseph Stalin’s comment, ‘It is not who votes in an election that matters but rather who counts the votes”.  Stalin was a dictator well versed in election rigging and tightening his grip on the nation as he was quick to purge all of his opponents from the party, the government, armed forces and intelligentsia, imprisoning, exiling and executing millions in process. Fearing rapid rise and tactics Vladmir Lenin had once recommended his dismissal from the politburo of the communist party in the then Soviet Republic.
However come the 15th December conference some Ugandans have indicated that they will protest this attempt at creating a sole candidacy arrangement for President Museveni. With the popular uprising in Burkina Faso still fresh in many people’s minds the President and his advisers ought to study how such moves have led to the toppling of many African leaders from power in the past. That is why I will always admire “The Madiba” — Nelson Mandela after spending 27 years in jail fighting for the liberation of his people from apartheid he only served one Presidential term after laying the foundation for a new South Africa a true patriot or African revolutionary if you ask me.
In my view Uganda with its youthful population, is on a brink where just one spark could ignite massive political unrest. Our government seems to ignore that the emergence of WhatsApp, Twitter and Facebook platforms that have made the flow of information super-fast, to the point where the government cannot even intervene in timely fashion once something has gone viral on social media as the Arab spring uprisings showed. Even with political reforms demanded by the opposition ahead of the 2016 poll still in the works many believe that the ground is not yet level for multiparty political dispensation in Uganda. Sadly Uganda has no opposition to speak of as many in this arena never seem to rise to the occasion. Some only do after either getting ejected from government and the few that can stand their ground seem to lack the charisma to connect with the average voter. The constant infighting and the lack of a common agenda has resulting in an opposition in disarray.
However away from politics — On the 19th December the Home is Best summit will travel to Gulu and Diaspora members are encouraged to attend. Gulu, still recovering from war, has been chosen as this year’s venue of the annual event organised by Uganda Investment Authority. Below is a press release from the ED – Uganda Investment Authority.
This year’s Ugandan Diaspora Gala will also see a new twist. The first Ugandan Diaspora Business Breakfast will be held on Monday 29th December from 9am to 12pm. Registration is now open for this event which targets those in the Diaspora who will be travelling home for Christmas. Topics will include Diaspora Tourism, Diaspora Life Insurance, Diaspora Banking, Diaspora Tax Policy, Real Estate and companies that target the Diaspora market among others. Also expected at that meet will be Diaspora business leaders who will also share their best business practices and investments opportunities.
On Tuesday 30th December we shall then gather at the Kampala Serena Hotel Victoria ballroom for our annual exhibition and gala with the official after-party held at Guvnor Uganda. The Tuesday event will also serve as a Diaspora book launch for Totems of Uganda — Buganda Edition and a collection of poems in prose — by Mumbejja Margaret Anne Mazzi Wampamba from Virginia. Four fashion designers, two comedians and host of entertainers including Swahili Nation have already confirmed their participation. The fee this year will be 150,000 shillings with a ticket for dinner allowing you entrance to Guvnor as well. However those going to Guvnor without dinner will pay the usual 30,000 shillings at the club entrance.
Looking forward to seeing you all in Kampala, 29-30 December for the biggest Diaspora Homecoming event of the year. Below are some highlights from last year. If you would like to attend or partner with us on this event please contact event coordinator — Ms. Belinda Namutebi at or
Quote of the month — “Watch your thoughts, they become words; watch your words, they become actions; watch your actions, they become habits; watch your habits, they become character; watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.” — Lao Tzu.
Happy holidays and see you all in 2015!
Ronnie Mayanja
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Skype | ronnie.mayanja | Twitter | @rmayanja |
Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people — Eleanor Roosevelt

About the Author

Ugandan Diaspora News Team

Ugandan Diaspora News Online is an independent, non political news portal primarily aimed at serving Ugandans who work and reside outside Uganda. Our aim is to be a one stop shop for everything Ugandan and the celebration of our Ugandan heritage.


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