PEPPER INTERVIEWS | Amidst all challenges and hindrances due to the disastrous pandemic, some learning institutions have still progressed through executing most services online. In the same manner, students have as well continued with their plans, especially in leadership.
Talking of leadership, apparently, the political Mobilisation in pursuit of the Guild President position at Uganda Christian University (UCU) is at its peak. Analyzing how possible this is in such a pandemic period, Masembe Owen Michael narrated his story and the plans to transform the students’ community at the institution. Below are his excerpts.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: Briefly tell us about yourself and your family background?
MM: My name is Masembe Owen Michael, I am a Ugandan by nationality currently pursuing my Bachelor’s Degree in law at Uganda Christian University (UCU).
I am an outgoing person who is passionate about what I do all the time. I love music and rugby because they bring me joy. I was born in a family of 5 children and the last born from my mom. Unfortunately, this year we lost our mom.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: How is your academic status?
MM: I am currently at Uganda Christian University pursuing my bachelor’s degree in law. I went to City Parents for my primary, Seeta High Mbalala Campus for O’level between 2013-2016 and lastly Mengo SS, for my A ‘level 2017-2018.
From there, I branched straight to the University. While at all those schools, I have achieved and learnt a lot by the grace of God, and my performance have been positively progressive.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: Why aspiring for politics nevertheless guild President?
MM: I have a vision that does not just look at addressing students challenges. I am looking at creating bigger opportunities for the students and these things are possible. In a nut shell, I plan to create better social capital for the student body at large, scholarship opportunities, revision of certain policies that do not only favour the students but administrators too, accountability- students ought to get value for their money. Once am entrusted with the position of guild president- UCU with the commitment I am mandated to deliver. Students have heard this before, over a million times, but what’s the difference? There has never been a candidate for a leadership position with so much experience and such a successful track record of working with the Guild. I have worked tirelessly supporting students over the last three years and I’m not going to stop any time soon.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: What plans do you have as a leader to transform the students’ community?
MM: I want my team to help students build their social capital, most of them come to campus just to study. But the question is, how do you leave? Students ought to be included in the decision-making process because they are the greatest stakeholders. I am looking at building students’ talents, creating a certain type of home away from home for international students and a unified university for all the different courses. My slogan is, “Unity in diversity” which literally means that amidst our different cultures, tribes and backgrounds, we ought to come together as one team.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: What makes you tick for this position?
MM: I am an outgoing person one determined to achieve results and leave a certain type of legacy that students have dreamt of from student leaders. I have the experience needed for this position, I have served before and I have delivered. With this, I believe I am the best candidate.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: Any challenges observed in youth leadership?
MM: Most youth leaders easily get compromised after they are given money and rather satisfy their own interests. This undermines their integrity.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: In your opinion, how can they be solved?
MM: I would say that leaders ought to first understand that their integrity comes first in all that they do and they should aim at respecting it whatever the cost may be. They should understand that these things they are greedy about are temporary but a legacy you leave behind is forever.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
MM: I want to practice law both at the regional and international levels. I as well want to pursue a national political career and in the next five years, I am quite sure I will be there God willing.
REDPEPPER DIGITAL: What’s you take regards pandemic circumstances challenging progress in the education sector?
MM: I would encourage all institutions of learning to adopt the new normal, thus the eLearning. UCU has done it and has greatly achieved that is why LDC has over 70% of students coming from UCU. This pandemic seems like it is not to end now, so it is upon us to be vigilant and adopt to change.