What do I study to be president ?

(Internet Photo)

BY ALEX TAREMWA of Rapha Girls SS in Lira last week about academics, setting career goals, the value of university education and life as we know it when one girl’s hand shot up to ask a question. “I want to be the President of Uganda in future,” she said. “What subjects should I study to achieve my dream?” Her question knocked me off balance. I did not know the presidency to be a career but a responsibility born out of leadership. When I discussed her question with the team I…

Read More

Not all policies are always good

I am a man who likes titles – legitimate or otherwise and I have accumulated quite a number already. That said, although this column will delve on policy issues, I cannot claim to be a policy analyst but I do not need to be one to tell a good policy from a bad one. Public and private enterprises in Uganda derive their operational mandate from clearly written and stipulated guidelines otherwise known as policies. Therefore, for a citizen to be a good one, or for an employee to thrive, he/she…

Read More

We are the resident monkeys in this burning forest

A young boy once asked his father why the whole town perceived him as crazy. His    father   responded, “Son, the ones dancing are thought to be crazy by those who cannot hear the music.” This logic also applies to most situations in the world today. Often, because we do not know about the existence, functionality and intricacies of a particular system, we are quick to dismiss it as worthless or worse – a failure. Take Uganda Christian University (UCU)’s career outreach programme for example. For over a year,…

Read More

Yahya Jammeh and how not to be a refugee

Yahya Jammeh, the former president of The Gambia (Internet Photo)

BY ALEX TAREMWA Last week, Rev Simon Feta, my philosophical friend, invited me to a four-day excursion in the West Nile region. The trip was meant to give students of Bachelor of Governance and International Relations a real-life field experience of   how bad governance breeds conflict and how international   players come together to handle its off-shoots. After    visiting the Rhino Camp Refugee Camp in Arua and Bidi-Bidi Refugee Camp in Yumbe District, it became increasingly obvious that the only way not to be a refugee is not…

Read More

Be a gardener not the lawn cutter this year

BY ALEX TAREMWA Few people – and those are Donald Trump fans – can confidently say 2016 was an amazing year for them. For the rest of us, it was a lemon cake with sprinkles of icing sugar to cover up the bitterness. If it was not hunger here, it was a drought there. If there weren’t floods here, there was an earthquake there. Even at a place oozing nothing short of divine presence – UCU, 2016 left hallmarks of agony     when it sent also 75 percent of…

Read More

Make someone merry during this Christmas

BY ALEX TAREMWA I went by Allan Galpin Health Centre the    other day. The doctor I  was assigned to noticed  me from a distance and called out, “Standard, you’re here too!” From our conversation, I noticed that the good doctor – with whom I share a confidentiality  clause – was unhappy. He   is part of the ‘essential personnel’ who  will  not be breaking off for Christmas this year, unlike the rest of the staff. And  it is not just Christmas – staff in the security, health and catering…

Read More

My slow, sole journey to salvation

BY ALEX TAREMWA Until the Sunday of October 2, 2016, I had  last stepped foot in church – by choice – on Boxing Day of 2007. Often      I went   to church either by compulsion or obligation. My absentia from church for close to a decade  should  in no way  be confused with my   agnostic approach to religion. I am convinced that my relationship with     Christ     is  a   personal   matter. However, over the years I have been judged, unfairly or not, as…

Read More

THE BIRD’S-EYE VIEW: The guild is for leaders not politicians

BY ALEX TAREMWA When I recently attended the Uganda Christian University guild presidential debate, I was left with a number of nagging questions. The most pertinent was: Is being a guild official the precursor of one’s future leadership career or is it merely a political launch pad? The debate was one of the most rowdy I have ever attended, and although I will not delve much into the good, the bad and the ugly of that night here. Suffice to say that the scene was symptomatic of politicians’ not leaders’ behaviour….

Read More

The Bird’s-Eye View: A retaker’s guide to getting the prize

BY ALEX TAREMWA Desperate times, they say, call for desperate measures . This is why I was not shocked to learn that some students were conned of thousands of shillings by some wise chaps who claimed they would make their retakes disappear. There is a saying in Ankole that only charcoal dies twice. It is burnt in the field before sale, and again burnt in the kitchen by the buyer. The story of the conned students is related to that saying. They failed certain papers and lost money trying to illegally…

Read More

The Bird’s-eye view: Greater good requires concerted efforts

Hanging around a representative sample of UCU staff has revealed two perception extremes. There is a section that is passionate about the university and work wholeheartedly every day to see it prosper. There is also another section whose association with the university is simply an opportunity to get paid at the end of the month.Sadly, the latter are the majority. To illustrate this, let us refer to the results of the survey conducted by the Career Development and Placement office among 500 new students, representing a quarter of the registered…

Read More