Across board. Mr Robert Mwesigwa Rukaari is the Honorary Consul for the Republic of Malawi, managing director Amproc, and the owner of Ankore Gardens Mall in Mbarara. He is among a group of entrepreneurs awarded honorary PhDs by the United Graduate College and Seminary International recently for services to society. Jobs and Career caught up with him, to talk about what the awards mean, and tips to Ugandan up-and-coming entrepreneurs.
A group of prominent Ugandans was recently awarded honorary degrees by an America university.
What does this mean to you and the Ugandan society?
This was a recognition who have excelled in different lines of businesses, changing society in one way or the other, living examples to be emulated by other Ugandans, especially the youth and having in mind the unemployment problem in the country.
Some of those awarded have really started from a humble background and made it to the top.
People like Dr Bulaimu Muwanga Kibirige (BMK) who started by ferrying people from one border to another, hence the name boda boda. Others like Dr Mutaasa Kafeero started off by selling bogoya from Uganda to Kenya. Now they are great achievers employing thousands of Ugandans. The youth have a lot to learn from them.
Who are those who were honoured?
Doctors Ephraim Ntaganda, Bulaimu Kibirige, Mutaasa Kafeero, Dr Amina Hersidr, Kabagambe Kaliisa, Robert Ssebunya, Rajni Tailor, Assuman Kinobe, Boney Katatumba, Karl Wiplfer, Ketan Morjaria, Ilyas Muhammad, Goodra Behakanira, Robert Ssebunya, Sayed Mohammad and Banarbas Taremwa
How was this group chosen for recognition?
The United Graduate College and Seminary International for so many years has been awarding Eminent Personalities Honorary Professorships and Doctorate Degrees in recognition of their services to society.
The university has Commissioners for International Standards worldwide who nominate people who have supported society in different ways. Like I mentioned before, people who have had a great impact in different disciplines such as environmental conservation, supporting charities, improving hospitality, trade and many others.
What do you think the youth should do to get where you are?
Simple. Think deep, work hard and be consistent in whichever goals they are pursuing. They should stay healthy, keep away from sex to avoid contracting HIVAids.
They should get out of this begging syndrome, looking for white-collar jobs and living a soft life. It is high time we changed the mindset to working hard.
How do you intend to change society?
Actually we have formed an association of eminent persons, which will be giving lectures and career guidance to different groups of people in the country.
We shall work hand-in-hand with the Ministry of Education through some of their programmes. It is also timely that they have started Skilling Uganda. Ugandans, especially the unemployed, need guidance. There is so much idle skill out there. We are going to lead these people by example.
We want the skilled Ugandans to look at successful entrepreneurs, listen to their aice and transform into high-profile citizens.
How else do you hope to help upcoming entrepreneurs and other people?
We intend to mobilise more entrepreneurs to join our club such that we can look for ways of sharing their skills and knowledge with other people.
We shall be meeting four times a year to see how we can help other people in the country. We shall also develop a website where different entrepreneurs will be sharing their development ideas with the rest of the country.
Such ideas on honesty and hard work will be shared. We are also rolling out our businesses to the countryside to help create employment opportunities to the youth in those areas.
May be I also need to encourage investors to extend services to the grassroots.
Yoweri Museveni, President of Uganda
Janet Museveni, First Lady – Uganda
Pierre Nkurunziza, President of Burundi,
Denise Nkurunziza, First Lady – Burundi
Wolde Glorgis, President of Ethiopia,
Kenneth Marende, Kenyan Parliament Speaker,
Former Presidents Joaquim Chissano (Mozambique), and Olusegun Obasanjo (Nigeria)
Former VP of Kenya, Mr Kalonzo Musyoka.
SOURCE: Daily Monitor