Saturday, July 19, 2008

Of Ugandan Women and the So-called ‘Corporate Guys’?

By Robert Kalumba (Daily Monitor)

From the start, we need to clearly find out the definition of a corporate, in order to clear the fog that surrounds who a “corporate guy” is. Then, we will try and find out the fuss some women have with the so called “corporates”.

According to the Cambridge International dictionary of English, the definition of corporate is, “relating to a large company”. Now, a friend of mine who takes himself as one of the corporates of Kampala, decided to help me with the “street version” of what a corporate guy is, that is; Someone who works for a leading tax paying company, sometimes drives a company car, and tends to wear shirts with the company logo on “dress down Friday’s”, and avoids the kabiriti’s like the plague, preferring blackberries and other sophisticated phones.

So having sorted that one out, why do women fuss over these men?

Who are these men anyway and what do they have that attracts the female species, and can any average Joe become a corporate too?

For one to graduate to a corporate, one has to work for a “big” company, normally hang out in the hip bars for a drink, say Zone 7 (not “Mama Fina’s” at Kamokya), cruise a decent car-which is usually got thanks to a car loan from the company (but the women don’t know that!), always appear intelligent in public, discuss the land question of Zimbabwe, and when it comes to who he hangs out with, its with his fellow “corporates” from other companies who discuss about the free booze at the next Goat Race. So why the fuss with this kind of human species?

Tracy, a bank teller of Barclays Bank, tells me it’s all about the image that these men portray. She says, “If you see someone who works for a renowned company, immediately you think this person is wealthy and intelligent.” But when I pointed out that the average businessman who sells tiles is actually far more wealthy than these corporates, and that if you engaged him in some kind of current affairs talk, he at least will know a thing or two about what is going on in the world.

Tracy still insisted that a corporate guy would still be her pick.

But if its image that attracts some of these women, then they are falling for a lie, because a company car, and all the perks that come with working for a popular bank for instance, do not define the person, but rather the company. In other words, you are falling for the company car, not the person, and that is what frustrates some of the so called “corporates.”

Henry who works for a beer company claims he has failed to find someone who wants him for him and not because he works for a leading beer company. He says, “Very many times, girls come up to me and the very first thing they ask is where you work, like where I work defines who I’m, and when I lie that I’m a trader in Kikubo, they seem disinterested, until I tell them that I work for a beer company, then their eyes glow!” Henry says he is feed up with how myopic some women can be, but if it gets him the girls, so be it!

Please get over the company cars, the sexy sounding titles (assistant sales manager of blah, blah…), the blackberries, and the free invites to company parties, not to mention the free tickets to concert shows. And at least get to know the person, what they are all about, other than jumping up in excitement like a headless chicken at the mere fact that he mentions he works for the telecommunication company that has bill boards all over the country.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Ugandan Prisoners Do Not Have Human Rights

The Newvision July 16 2008
LAST week it was reported that three inmates suffocated to death in Kiruhura district prison on June 29. According to the western regional Police commander, Farouk Muyirima, the prison in which the incident occurred has only two small rooms which could not accommodate 30 prisoners.

This tragedy could have been avoided if those in authority had been more responsible. Kiruhura is not the only culprit.

Luzira Maximum Prison, the biggest prison in the country, was built in 1920 to accommodate only 600 inmates but is today bursting at the seams with over 4,000 prisoners without any significant expansion. One can only imagine the conditions the inmates live in.

It is particularly pathetic that the suspects who lost their lives in Kiruhura were arrested on suspicion of being idle and disorderly when they were found drinking alcohol and playing cards in the morning.

At 52, one of the dead inmates, Ephraim Nankunda, is considered to have been of advanced age. Was the punishment and the consequent death of these people proportional to the crime they were arrested for?

The sanctity of human life cannot be overemphasised. In May, it was reported that prisoners in Kyenjojo had to walk 38km from Butiiti Prison to Kyenjojo town to attend court and walk back. The Human Rights Commission revealed that many times, these prisoners do not reach court in time and have to trudge back. This prolongs their stay in prison.

Prisons should essentially be corrective and not punitive agencies. The prisoners who are treated in such an insensitive manner are part and parcel of our society.

Anybody can go to prison no matter how humble or mighty. Although prisons are not expected to be pleasant places, they should nevertheless not resemble concentration camps where inmates lose their human identity.

The Human Rights Commission ought to follow up the Kiruhura incident and ensure redress for the dependants of the deceased.

The Woos of Kampala's Hotels

By Opiyo Oloya

IF you build it, they will come. The quote is credited to the 26th US president, Theodore Roosevelt Jr. at the time of the building of the Panama Canal in 1904. I thought about this quote as I strolled along Speke Road in Kampala last Thursday afternoon.

Starting from the older and greyer Grand Imperial and Speke hotels, I walked past the regally imposing and renovated Sheraton, toward the Serena hotel, turning slightly left onto the spectacularly crafted work of poetry that is the Grand Imperial Royale Hotel.

Awed by the imposing landmark, I entered through the lobby, past security, and to the impossibly engineered rotunda furnished with soft leather sofas and a view that allows you to gaze straight into the stars above. My exploratory journey took me across the Golf Course of lower Kololo to the serenely elegant Kampala Protea, where beautifully latticed cobblestone met me in the driveway. After pausing long enough to inquire about the inviting menu, I retraced my steps and walked to the Golf Course Hotel.

Without overstating the facts, these are world class hotels that would nestle comfortably anywhere in Europe or America. Indeed, the sheer number and closeness of Kampala hotels reminded me of Las Vegas—although Kampala hotels garner better sense of exclusivity due to the leafy greenery around them. However, while Las Vegas hotels are besieged by visitors day and night, Kampala hotels are mostly quiet and empty. So much so that one wishes that Roosevelt’s vision was true for these beautifully appointed hotels.

Set in prime locations, they were the fields of dreams hatched in the feverish months preceding the four-day Commonwealth Head of Government Meeting last October.

Driven by the promise of huge influx of officials accompanying their leaders to the summit, Kampala hoteliers had spared neither money nor creativity to mould a tapestry of emotional oomph. Yet, there was an uneasy eerie feeling that I was witnessing the crumbling of dreams. The feeling was confirmed the next day by an article in the latest edition of The Independent ,/i>news magazine. Entitled “CHOGM hotels fight to find guests and keep banks away”, the article catalogued the woes facing Kampala hotels that had feverishly expanded in the days and weeks leading to the CHOGM. According to the article, many hotels are struggling with poor occupancy rate, some as low as 5 percent.

The reason for the drop is attributed to a glut of available rooms in these four and five-star hotels. But I sense that there is more to this than just pure oversupply of hotel rooms in Kampala. Foremost, simply saying Uganda is an attractive vacation destination is not enough to bring in planeloads of pleasure seeking tourists.

Part of the problem of course is that Uganda remains a less attractive destination for tourists from Europe, America, and the Far East because of the unresolved peace process in the north. It makes many would-be tourists uneasy and, therefore, eager to find alternative peaceful destinations like Tanzania, Madagascar, and the southern African countries of Mozambique, Botswana and Swaziland.

Moreover, the political unrest in Kenya early in the year that would have pushed some tourists to Uganda has stabilised, and the tourists are beginning to tiptoe back to the beaches of Mombasa, and the wildlife of Masai Mara. Furthermore, big Kampala hotels must now compete with the growing popularity of bed and breakfast alternative accommodations like Makerere University Guest House and Banda Inns in Muyenga Hill.

This niche market is more attractive to European travellers seeking adventure in the exotic, with the combined intimacy and charm of a country manor. Banda Inns may not be a four-star hotel, but buried deep in a banana plantation, it offers a rugged reassurance that the sterile glazed tiles of four-star hotels do not.

Consequently, it is a struggle to find a spot in the inn which was at full capacity this weekend with more guests expected from America and Europe later in the week. However, the most urgent problem facing Kampala hoteliers can be summarised with this observation: Las Vegas has a hotel every 100 metres which are almost always full. But then Las Vegas has a product to sell—namely, a fun good time, gambling, relaxing and vacationing. What are Kampala hotels selling? What is the product, and how will the product excite European and American vacationers to buy the product?

One quick way to get recognition is to rebrand Kampala hotels by linking them with internationally recognised hotels. Sheraton and Protea are already known international products, but Imperial Royale, Africana, Speke, Equatoria and the bland-sounding Golf Course Hotel are not. By working out partnership arrangement with established chains such as the Marriott, Hilton, Hampton, Delta, Holiday Inn and so forth, Kampala hotels will get instant recognition worldwide. There is also the need to market directly to specific clients using tried ways such as time-share where vacationers buy in advance a specific period of stay in the hotel every year.

The advantage is that the hotels are assured of clients regardless of the time of the year. There is also the less attractive but lucrative business of marketing Kampala as the crown jewel of casinos in East and Central Africa. While this is already being initiated, there would need to be a uniform action by all the Kampala hotels for a more organised marketing where each hotel offers a specific theme.

Let them send a joint-marketing team to learn what Las Vegas is offering in casino products. Naturally, casino in Kampala will bring the unwanted social ills that include gambling addictions, sex trade and serious crimes. These would need to be considered before a final push for such a product.

Essentially, Kampala hoteliers need to aggressively adopt the motto—be seen or perish.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

All Africa Interuniversity Games Update

Like I said the other day, Uganda is the current home of thousands of students from all over Africa for the interuniversity games.

The fun is simply too much, people from different cultures getting to learn from one another is beautiful.

The standard of competition with such youthful energy is so high you would think you are at the Olympics.

Whichever country wins, they deserve it.

Watch this space.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Uganda: Wildlife is Making a Comeback

By Marie Javins,

What’s that?” I said, pointing to some straw and mud gunk on the side of our Murchison Falls home.

“Hippo shit,” responded my host, nicknamed Herr Marlboro because of his resemblance to the German Marlboro Man. “They flip their tails around when they shit, and it gets it all over the place.”

I hadn’t been aware of this when the hippo had wandered past our bed on the screened verandah the night before. I’d thought rain coming through the screen was our only concern.

I was living with Herr Marlboro in Murchison Falls National Park -- the largest of Uganda’s ten national parks -- for the summer. I worked daily on my laptop, desperately trying to meet deadlines, while H.M. was employed as a German development worker rehabilitating the park’s infrastructure.

The Shadow of Idi Amin

Uganda is -- unfairly -- best known for the times of Idi Amin, the mad dictator whose arbitrary, murderous whims were the stuff of horrifying legends.

But Uganda has come a long way since the fall of Amin in 1979. It is now an economic success story in East Africa. Its cities are safer than those of neighboring countries, and tourists come for Nile whitewater rafting, bird watching, and world-famous mountain gorilla trekking in addition to traditional safaris.

Wildlife Making a Comeback

Many of the safari animals were poached and eaten by during the desperate Amin times, but under the protection of the Uganda Wildlife Authority, they are making a comeback. We regularly spotted giraffes, elephants, baboons, monkeys, gazelle, hippos, warthogs, buffalo, crocodiles, and antelope as we went about our daily business.

Lions can be seen occasionally.

Occasionally, we’d see a lion, and one night we encountered a pride of ten adult lions and countless cubs. We never spotted a leopard, but often ran into one UWA ranger who excelled at leopard-spotting.

“Just ahead, turn right by the acacia tree—you can’t miss it!”

We always missed it.

Not So Sweet

One day in early September, I got to know a bit more about the hippos than I’d intended to. I learned that they are not as sweet as they look, and that the statistic about the hippo being the biggest killer in Africa is to be taken seriously.

Murchison Falls National Park is located on both the north and south side of the Nile. There is no bridge, and everyone uses the hourly ferry to cross from the lodge area—on the south side—to the safari area in the north. The ferry is kept on the south side, which ensures the safety of guests as northwestern Uganda has rebels and also borders Congo.

H.M. and I had gone on a disappointing afternoon game drive in which we’d spotted only some giraffes and gazelles. We waited for the ferry on the north side, which we could see was still loading cars on the south side.

Marie poses a little too close to a hippo.

It Seemed Safe...

A hippo was eating grass in broad daylight at the northern ferry landing. H.M. took his digital Rebel camera and headed over. This hippo seem habituated to people so he got closer than he normally would have, within 50 feet. It seemed safe so I followed suit with my film Rebel.

The hippo was covered in fresh scars and deep wounds. Perhaps it had been involved in a territorial dispute or in a fight with a lion or crocodile.

“Click, whirr” went our Canons.

Then, through my 70-300 mm Canon zoom lens, I saw the hippo stiffen and look up. His face changed from “I like to eat grass” to “I will kill you, tourist.” I clicked the shutter. He charged.

H.M. and I both ran for our lives, straight to our truck. We were lucky to have a head-start on the angry hippo as he could easily have outrun us. As we were both about to leap up onto the pick-up bed, the hippo slowed and returned to eating grass.

Some rangers were laughing at us from a distance. We joined in, full of adrenalin. We didn’t really think the hippo could have killed us as we had been pretty close to the truck. But all the statistics of hippo deaths had run through my head as I ran, thinking “Stupid, Marie, very stupid.”

The author shops for vegetables in Kampala.

For a moment, my deadline tensions were forgotten. I laughed together with H.M. and the rangers as we crossed the Nile.

Facing Reality

As pleasant as it was to live in a national park amidst hippos and warthogs, I had to face reality for a few weeks every month. I had rented an apartment in the city of Kampala, and would stay there while making use of Uganda Telecom’s free Wi-Fi hotspots to upload my freelance files to servers in the USA.

A large boulevard full of mini-bus taxis (“matatus”) divides Kampala into the new city and the old city.

The old city -- which reeks of diesel fumes -- is a chaotic warren of one-way streets, masses of people, and motorbike taxis (“boda-bodas”) hustling for fares.

This is the part of town for bargains and for second-hand clothing from the U.S., sold in the open-air Owino Market. Stalls are hives of activity, as sellers dig through mounds of old clothing. Others sew up seams, while charcoal fires heat up irons, which are used to make the clothing look nearly good-as-new. Tourist Hotel, a decent one-star hotel with $25-a-night rooms, is located in the middle of the old city.

The new city is home to expensive hotels, wide roads, traffic circles, upscale restaurants, a golf course, and new shopping malls. Stop by Garden City Mall or the Lugugo “Game” store and you might be forgiven for thinking you were in a medium-sized city back home.

The 'New' Kampala

Neither part of the city features tourist attractions, but if you are going to Uganda for a safari, gorilla or chimpanzee tracking, bird-watching, or the action sports at the town of Jinja, you’ll be visiting Kampala to book activities and to exchange your home currency for Ugandan shillings.

Seven Muddy Hills

Kampala is built on seven hills—muddy hills as demonstrated by the red dirt that eternally lived on my Tevas—and my apartment was a few miles from the one that is home to downtown. I lived past Kabalagala, where the aid agencies and American embassy are located.

“Mzunga, mzunga,” the children would call to me as I walked to the road to flag down a shared mini-bus taxi heading towards my favorite Internet hotspot. A mzunga is a foreign person, or maybe just a white person. I never heard the literal translation, but it was clear from everyone’s catcalls that I indeed was the spitting image of a mzunga.

Getting Around

Murchison Falls in Uganda

For travelers without rented cars, shared mini-bus taxis are the best way to get around Uganda outside of the Kampala center (motorbike taxis are dangerous but fast for travel within the city -- take one at your own risk). Mini-buses leave when full but don’t operate on a timetable. They go just about everywhere and have set fares.

Both mini-bus taxis and motorbike taxis always keep the bare minimum amount of fuel in their tanks. One day I stopped for gas three times and only left my apartment once.

Another day, I inadvertently rode the school bus.

I waved down the blue-and-white mini-bus taxi at my usual spot, on the paved road just in front of my apartment.

Mini-buses legally hold 14 passengers, a conductor, and a driver. It is common to squeeze plenty more people in on local routes, especially if those plenty more are small children.

We stopped in front of a small elementary school. A teacher gave some coins to the conductor and ushered six uniformed children toward the bus. The conductor got out and lifted the smallest children, who couldn’t have been more than 4-years-old, onto the first seat.

It Takes a Village

The kids were well-behaved and smiling. They all sat squished together. As their stop came, the medium-size kid squeaked.

“Mah-sow!” It’s the Luganda word for “stop.” English is the official language of Uganda, but there are dozens of tribal languages present as well. Luganda and Swahili are the most common.

Traffic in Kampala

The driver pulled the taxi over and the conductor opened the sliding door. A mother was waiting in front of a three-walled butcher shop. She took her kids from the bus.

We proceeded on until the other kids squeaked “mah-sow.”

The rest of the children disembarked. Passengers helped lift the kids to the sidewalk. Several walked off together down a dirt road. The conductor took two kids by the hands and walked them across the street, before returning to his spot in our minibus.

It does indeed take a village, even in the city.

Marie Javins

Marie Javins is a semi-nomadic writer, editor, and comic book colorist. Her blog about writing a book while living in Africa is at

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Uganda's Football Team Left Fatherless

I just read that Laszlo Czaba, the Ugandan national football team head coach has signed a three year contract with hearts football club of Scotland. Now that should not be a problem except for one issue, this country has not participated in the African Nation’s cup for about three decades now and Czaba seemed to show us some light at the end of the tunnel. But ooops he’s gone for greener pastures. Sometimes I just do not know how to express my disillusionment.

Not to blame Czaba, but he should have waited and at least helped us qualify before thinking of leaving. Now I just do not know what next. Anyway good luck boy and I hope you do not get sucked too soon like the other coaches at that club before you. The club owner Vladimir Romanov is not an easy man to deal with.

Friday, July 11, 2008


Mental health is a state of successful performance of the mental function, resulting in productive activities, fulfilling relationships with other people, and the ability to adapt to change and cope with diversity.

Mental health is indispensable to personal well-being, family and interpersonal relationships and contribution to community or society. In other words, what it means to be mentally healthy is subject to many different interpretations that are rooted in value judgments that may vary across cultures (Secker 1998, Cowen 1994).

Mental health in Uganda is not a well known phenomenon due to high illiteracy rates, limited research and low levels of public sensitization. However closely looking at the current mental health situation in Uganda, one wonders for how long we can continue ignoring it since research has shown that from early childhood until death, mental health is the springboard of thinking and communication skills, learning, emotional growth, resilience and self-esteem. These are important ingredients of each individual’s successful contribution to community and society.

It should be noted that mental health is a facet of life that evolves throughout one’s life time. Just as each person can do much to promote and maintain their overall health regardless of age, each also can do much to promote and strengthen mental health at every stage of life.

Much remains to be learned about the causes, treatment and prevention of mental and behavioral disorders. Obstacles that may limit the availability or accessibility of mental health services for some Ugandans are being dismantled, but disparities persist, which need to be tackled. Thanks to research and the experiences of many individuals who

have /have had a mental health problem, their family members, and other advocates, we are achieving the power to tear down the most formidable obstacle to future progress in the arena of mental health and illness. That obstacle is stigma.

It is now evident that we have acquired an immense amount of knowledge that permits us to respond to the needs of persons with mental illness in a manner that is both effective and respectful. We should add to this knowledge and share it with others if we are gearing at realistic and commendable solutions to Uganda ’s current mental health situation.

In past years, the mental health field often focused principally on mental illness in order to serve individuals who were most severely affected. Only recently has the field matured to respond to intensifying interests and concerns about disease prevention and health promotion. Because of the more recent consideration of these topic areas, the body of accumulated knowledge regarding them is as expansive as that for mental illness. This if given more consideration may see Uganda ’s mental health situation improving.

Research can yield increasingly effective treatment for mental disorders. When people understand that mental disorders are not the result of moral failings or limited will power, but are legitimate illnesses that are responsive to specific treatments, much of the negative stereotyping may dissipate. Fresh approaches to disseminate research information and thus, to counter stigma will help very much in reforming Uganda ’s mental health situation.

As stigma abates, a transformation in public attitudes occurs, people become eager to seek care, they become more willing to absorb its costs and most importantly, they become far more receptive to the massages of mental health and mental illness as part of the mainstream of health and they are a concern for all people.

As a solution to Uganda’s mental health situation, we need to first and foremost know the statistics we are dealing with, i.e, number and distribution of disorders, their cause like work place related stress, trauma from wars, diseases and drug abuse, and their effects on individuals, families and colleagues. All these define the mental health situation in Uganda more accurately.

With realization that mental illness is a situation here with us and appreciation of the fact that ignoring it will only cause more harm than good, we have to find appropriate ways of dealing with it in terms of prevention and cure.

These measures may include knowing how many mental health practitioners we need, formulating the necessary training for such practitioners, designing the appropriate equipment and conducive environment for treating the mentally ill people, designing new methods of therapy and including the public in active participation in solving Uganda’s current mental health situation.

The fact that mental health is underestimated and its magnitude not appreciated, we need to find out why this is the case in the first place and to create avenues for general understanding and appreciation of the mental health situation in the country. This should be basically through research and public sensitization.

Writing papers and reports on mental health brings out a lot of information that may attract the attention of possible donors and raise interest in many people who get to read such information. Increased interest and funding of mental health issues will greatly improve the mental health situation in Uganda through increased support of mental health programs.

Considering the above mentioned issues, it is this author’s contention that accepting mental health as just another illness is the most important step towards a viable mental health solution for the country, with this, stigma abates and then together we can fight mental health problems through preventive and curative measures for a mentally healthy Uganda .


Social media is an umbrella term that defines the various activities that integrate technology, social interaction, and the construction of words and pictures. This interaction, and the manner in which information is presented, depends on the varied perspectives and "building" of shared meaning, as people share their stories, and understandings. Social media use the “wisdom of crowds” to connect information in a collaborative manner. (accessed 23 Feb 2008)

Social media can take many different forms, including Internet forums, message boards, weblogs, wikis, podcasts, mashups, RSS, pictures and video. Technologies such as blogs, picture-sharing, vlogs, wall-postings, email, instant messaging, music-sharing, group creation, voice over IP, to name a few.

Examples of social media applications are Google (reference, social networking), Wikipedia (reference), MySpace (social networking), Facebook(social networking), (personal music), YouTube (social networking), Wikis: Wikipedia (social advertising) · MySpace and Facebook (social nertworking) · Twitter and Pownce (presence apps)· CareFlash (health apps)· YouTube(video sharing) · Second Life (virtual reality)· Upcoming (events) · Mixx and Reddit (news aggregation) · Flickr and Zooomr (photo sharing) · (live casting) · and StumbleUpon (social bookmarking) ·World of Warcraft (online gaming) · sharing) (accessed 23 Feb 2008)

A number of characteristics distinguish social media from traditional media such as newspapers, television, books, and radio. Social media mainly depends on interactions between people as the discussion and integration of words builds shared-meaning, and this is supported by technology. Social media utilities create opportunities for the use of both inductive and deductive logos by its users. Claims or warrants are quickly transitioned into generalizations due to the manner in which shared statements are posted and viewed by all. The speed of communication, breadth, and depth, and ability to see how the words build a case solicits the use of rhetoric and increases efficiency.

Using social media, a CEO can be confident of being in touch with his employees whenever he/she has anything important and urgent to communicate with them. For example conference meeting alerts and updates, distribution of assignments in a more effective way than having to call employees to his office which wastes a lot of time and creates commotion around the premises with movement up and about, social media is becoming increasingly popular because it enables employees to share information with anyone at any time. An absent employee can download the podcast of a recorded meeting he missed and get abreast with the developments at work.

Interestingly, there's an intriguing concept behind social media applications/technology--think of all the workers who pull data from sources inside and outside their companies. “Mashups provide one interface where employees can get multiple data streams that can be changed to present new types of information” Mary Hayes Weier, making supervision less necessary. A CEO will find that he/she can easily access and share very important data from different sources without having to waste time visiting independent websites. “When connected to converged IP networks, employees can continue to work from almost anywhere, and can connect on the move using VoIP and IP VPNs”. Companies are struggling to integrate mobile applications with existing IT infrastructure in order for informal knowledge sharing between remote workers to be maintained and to make it less necessary for employees to congregate and dedicate their time to other important matters. “By exploiting mashups, situational applications, Web 2.0 techniques and lightweight data access, new breeds of Web-based applications and services are being cobbled together fast, cheap, and without undue drain on IT staffs and developers. Tools and online services both are being used to combine external web services like maps and weather with internal data feeds and services to add whole new dimensions of business intelligence and workflow automation, often in a few days, often without waiting in line in order to get IT attention”. (accessed 23 Feb 2008)

Studies have shown that the more forward-thinking people in It departments realize that the faster they can put together publishable data content, they can get a deeper understanding in a very short time about what their customers want. They can then go back and decide the best way to open up that data. Is it through syndication feeds, XML, or programmatic API? That’s what a lot of Web 2.0 and mashups are about — new avenues for communication, where you can be engaged and you can look at information and how you can put things together. And it has the right costs associated with it — inexpensive (accessed 23 Feb 2008)

Social media applications among other things give employees a wider spectrum of knowledge since it promotes easy sharing of knowledge and information, CEOs will find that their employees are working faster and more efficiently. Needless to mention that the working relationships between the employees and also with the administrators can be monitored and where need be improved since there is constant contact and a sense of belonging given the fact that anyone can contribute what they think is useful for the corporation. For example distribution public safety messages, audio reports on official and unofficial tours, etc might end up being useful to employees and may even save the corporation some unforeseeable costs.

In schools for example podcasting can be a tool for teachers or administrators to communicate curriculum, assignments and other information with parents and the community.

In situations where some employees may have some grievances or may want a change in some policies in the corporation but are afraid to openly express themselves for fear of being singled out, CEOs may find it useful to employ social media in order to get to know what their employees want and then decide whether it is possible or not to implement change for a better working relationship. Blogs may come in handy in such situations as they are more accepted these dats as sources of news, opinion and means of applying pressure on authority “A blog (a portmanteau of web log) is a website where entries are commonly displayed in reverse chronological order. "Blog" can also be used as a verb, meaning to maintain or add content to a blog…. The ability for readers to leave comments in an interactive format is an important part of many blog”s. (accessed 26 Feb 2008)

With the increasing competition among corporations to employ the best candidates they can get their hands on, CEOs must embrace advancement in technology because the best employees out there given the chance to choose who to work with will definitely choose an organisation they feel is up to date with technological advancement. Social media solves this dilemma CEOs might find themselves in because for people who regularly use the web. It allows you to easily stay informed by retrieving the latest content from the sites you are interested in. You save time by not needing to visit each site individually. You ensure your privacy, by not needing to join each site's email newsletter hence many employees will feel obliged to join such a team as opposed to one that is not advancing in technology.

Another social media application is wiki.This software allows users to create, edit, and link web pages easily. Wikis are often used to create collaborative websites and to power community websites. These wiki websites are often also referred to as wikis; for example, Wikipedia is one of the best known wikis. Wikis are being installed by businesses to provide affordable and effective Intranets and for Knowledge Management. Ward Cunningham, developer of the first wiki, WikiWikiWeb, originally described it as "the simplest online database that could possibly work". (Wikipedia 26 Feb 2008)

A prospective corporation would definitely want such a system for itself to improve efficiency

In fact, social media applications can no longer be over looked by those running corporations if they (CEOs) are to remain competitive and efficient. It is now difficult to run any corporation efficiently without employing social media effectively and this is going to be more of the case in future.

Museveni declaration has closed succession debate

Omar Kalinge Nnyago- Daily monitor has written ठाट President Museveni has broken the silence. He is ready to seek a fourth term (sixth term to be exact) ‘if the NRM decides so’. He is willing and available. He is not quitting just yet, and whatever opinion you have of the president’s announcement, there is no doubt that the campaigns for the magic 2011 have begun.

The Presidents pronouncement is significant for two reasons. First, by declaring his candidature three years early, he intended to keep off those in his party who had any pretensions of standing for president. They now will have to stand against Museveni at the delegates’ conference and get humiliated. Or to quit the NRM and join another party.

Secondly, by this pronouncement, he has put an end to the incessant succession debate that is raging in the media and indeed in his party itself. Museveni is determined to remain Uganda’s president. The argument for Museveni’s perpetuity since the lifting of the term limits have been numerous.

A few are recounted here. Proponents argue that allowing Museveni rule forever is a “token of appreciation by a grateful nation for good leadership.” They imply therefore that the presidency is a retirement gift and not serious national service.

The other argument is that Museveni is still capable of doing some good. This would mean that Ugandans must squeeze out all utility from Mr Museveni before he dies. Another reason is that there is no immediately available alternative to fill his shoes, being the super human being he is, a rare God’s gift to the people of Uganda, a land that suffers an acute shortage of intelligent and capable people. This can only be an insult to Ugandans.

The other favourite argument in favour of Museveni’s perpetuity is that there are no term limits for other arms of government -- the legislature and the judiciary. This is an absurd comparison. For, unlike the presidency, the legislature is not a one-person institution because its decisions, resolutions and actions are group matters.

Likewise the decision of a single judge is subject to a system of appeals. But perhaps the most forceful argument the “Museveni perpetuists” advance is that it is undemocratic to take away from the people the power to choose whom they want to govern them.

This is a gross misrepresentation of the gist of democracy. Democracy recognises necessity for setting parameters through rules; otherwise, people would be allowed to do whatever they wanted to, without any restrictions. But the crux of the matter, really, is that the NRM is inherently incapable of presiding over a smooth transfer of power both internally (within the party) as well as at the wider national level.

President Museveni has been the chairman/president since the death of Yusuf Lule and Haji Kigongo his Vice Chairman. Consequently, after a quarter a century of internal dictatorship, the Movement has found itself in a trap of its own making: the incapability of contemplating life after Museveni.

Most proponents of the perpetuity model are more afraid of the future than they are convinced that Uganda suffers a leadership talent drought. Some, for their own selfish ends, cannot be sure they can keep their fraudulently amassed wealth after Museveni’s departure.

Meanwhile, common sense should dictate to the opposition that the only way the intending perpetual president can go home is by being defeated in an election. And to be able to achieve that, they must put aside their petty differences and unite to change the disastrous route the country has taken.

If what we heard early in the week is true, that DP has vowed never to cooperate with the FDC (or any other party?), then we can as well crown Museveni Emperor of Uganda. No single political party in Uganda is capable of winning an election alone or more importantly, safeguard its victory if it won anyway. Coming from the Party’s President General Ssebaana Kizito, a few months before his retirement, the “never” word was unfortunate.

It is hoped that the next DP leadership that would be probably more energetic and strategic in thinking would find the courage to disagree with the outgoing president on the matter of cooperation with other parties, however angry one might be about the behaviour of another party.

The situation the country finds itself in, of uncontrollable corruption, of gross unemployment, brutality of security organs, abuse of human rights, decline of education and health standards, will require more sacrifice and courage than wild statements at press conferences.

Uganda’s Politics

Grace Matsiko (daily monitor) reports thatPresident Yoweri Museveni has given the Criminal Investigations Directorate until July 31 to compile evidence against Maj. Gen. Jim Muhwezi and other government officials implicated in the misuse of the Global Fund to fight HIV/Aids and malaria, Daily Monitor has learnt.

“I am fed up of being blackmailed on this Global Fund issue; does it take ages to know the truth? I am giving you July 31 to end these investigations,” Mr Museveni reportedly told Mr Ochora during the meeting. “Some people involved in this money (scam) insinuate they used it for NRM work. Let them go to court and produce the evidence,” an angry Museveni reportedly said.

Former Health minister Jim Muhwezi is at the centre of the alleged mismanagement of the US$201 million Global Fund with his two deputies – Mike Mukula and Alex Kamugisha – and the coordinator of the Project Management Unit, Dr Tiberius Muhebwa.

Earlier this week, Maj. Gen. Muhwezi claimed that the ruling National Resistance Movement has repeated some of the mistakes it sought to correct when it came to power after a five-year guerrilla war in 1986, two days before Capt. Mukula said party leader President Yoweri Museveni and secretary general had “failed to offer party leadership”.

Meanwhile Maj. Gen. James Kazini has petitioned the Constitutional Court challenging his trial before the General Court Martial.

The former army commander was on March 27 sentenced to three years imprisonment and sent to Luzira prison for causing financial loss of Shs61 million.

He spent close to three weeks in Luzira before he was on April 21 granted bail by the Court Martial Appeals Court, pending his appeal.

Gen. Kazini, was jailed with two co- accused, Lt. Col. Dura Mawa Muhindo and Capt. Michael Baryaguma, convicted for abuse of office, uttering false documents and causing financial loss.

Uganda’s Politics

Grace Matsiko (daily monitor) reports thatPresident Yoweri Museveni has given the Criminal Investigations Directorate until July 31 to compile evidence against Maj. Gen. Jim Muhwezi and other government officials implicated in the misuse of the Global Fund to fight HIV/Aids and malaria, Daily Monitor has learnt.

“I am fed up of being blackmailed on this Global Fund issue; does it take ages to know the truth? I am giving you July 31 to end these investigations,” Mr Museveni reportedly told Mr Ochora during the meeting. “Some people involved in this money (scam) insinuate they used it for NRM work. Let them go to court and produce the evidence,” an angry Museveni reportedly said.

Former Health minister Jim Muhwezi is at the centre of the alleged mismanagement of the US$201 million Global Fund with his two deputies – Mike Mukula and Alex Kamugisha – and the coordinator of the Project Management Unit, Dr Tiberius Muhebwa.

Earlier this week, Maj. Gen. Muhwezi claimed that the ruling National Resistance Movement has repeated some of the mistakes it sought to correct when it came to power after a five-year guerrilla war in 1986, two days before Capt. Mukula said party leader President Yoweri Museveni and secretary general had “failed to offer party leadership”.

Meanwhile Maj. Gen. James Kazini has petitioned the Constitutional Court challenging his trial before the General Court Martial.

The former army commander was on March 27 sentenced to three years imprisonment and sent to Luzira prison for causing financial loss of Shs61 million.

He spent close to three weeks in Luzira before he was on April 21 granted bail by the Court Martial Appeals Court, pending his appeal.

Gen. Kazini, was jailed with two co- accused, Lt. Col. Dura Mawa Muhindo and Capt. Michael Baryaguma, convicted for abuse of office, uttering false documents and causing financial loss.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Destination uganda

It has been long since I last had a chance to write hear.All because I have been very busy lately. anyway I was sitted in my office at the most prestigious university in Uganda when a thought crossed my mind. Uganda is increasingly becoming a destination for many people around the world. Just recently we hosted the much publicized commonwealth heads of government meeting (chogm) then there was an Arab /African dialogue and now Makerere university is hosting the all Africa interuniversity games exactly next to where am sitting.If you are out there do not miss out on visiting the pearl of Africa because it is exactly as beautiful as it sounds.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

20 Young Girls Burn In School Fire

Now this one is guaranteed to make you cry. Twenty (20) young girls getting burnt in a dormitry at school is not something we hear of every day but alas, a school just in the nearby towns to Kampala called Budo junior school had one of its dormitries go up in flames with the result that 20 girls between the ages of 8-9 years lost their lives.

Whats more? two bodies of male adults were also found in the wreckledge of a girls' dormitry.Police is promising thourogh investigations but from my experience with Uganda, all this will be forgotten in acouple of weeks save of course for the families that lost their dear angels

I am lost of words but only God can judge the living and the dead and may the souls of those little angels rest in enternal peace.

By the way did I tell you that families can not bury their dead because they have burnt beyond recornition and we have to wait for DNA results? The only right now is the politics that has been going on in the school with the changing of the administration. By the way the new school head is just one month old there and it is said the old head tried to resist being transfered and even mobilised strikes against the change.

Just watch this space for more on this sad development.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Travel in Kampala comes to a standstill

Yesterday I or must I say we in Kampala who do not drive had a very rough time. taxi drivers went on strike protesting the tight regulations on them imposed by police.

This meant that we had to walk to work and any where else we wanted to go and back home. The only other option was to use motorcycles which of course given the crisis had increased their fares almost ten-fold.

This I blame on governments carrying out policies without carrying out analysis studies to predict their outcomes.

A researcher like me would have advised them to introduce these policies one at a time to prevent such a circumstance.

Any way things seem to be coming back to normal given the fact that the drivers do not have enough savings to keep them going without work for long.


My name is Wamala Dennis Mawejje, aka denkross, a citizen of Uganda in my early twenties.

I am a graduate with a bachelors in economist and now practicing as a private researcher for different firms around the world.

I love making friends, having fun, reading and traveling.

Today is a special day in my life since i get to welcome you to my blog.


With love denkross