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Ugandan Activist Esther Nakajjigo Eulogized



Activist Esther Nakajjigo who doubles as Uganda’s ambassador for women and girls has been praised for her advocacy for the rights of women and girls and other underprivileged members of the community.

Nakajjigo, the European Union leader in fighting violence against women and girls passed away on 13th June 2020 following a heavy storm accident which involved a gate and a car in which she was traveling at the Arches National Park in Utah county in the United States.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions that included shutting down of the international borders, her body was brought back to Uganda on Saturday August 22, 2020, with the help of various high profile personalities including First Lady and Education Minister Janet Museveni.

In a memorial service held at Princess Diana High School in Munyonyo, Kampala on Monday which was attended by among others Director CID Grace Akulo, Danish Ambassador to Uganda, European Union officials, Nakajjigo was hailed for her tremendous efforts to fight violence against women and girls.

Thomas Tiedemann, the acting Head of Cooperation of European Union in Uganda who represented Uganda’s EU Ambassador Atilio Pacific, praised Nakajjigo for dedicating her life to supporting the underprivileged.

“Esther dedicated her life to supporting the vulnerable and most underprivileged people in the society especially the youth. Esther’s outstanding service for the underprivileged members of the community, even at personal sacrifice can be traced way back when she used her personal resources to establish the Princess Diana Health Center III in Makindye, Kampala,” said Tiedemann.

Danish Ambassador to Uganda laying a wreath on the casket.

The center provides free adolescent health and reproductive health services to young people.

Tiedemann said the deceased had, before her passing, traversed the country, reaching some of the remote corners of Uganda sensitizing girls and boys on the risks of teenage pregnancies and creating opportunities for teenage mothers so they could have a second chance in life.

“One of the outstanding achievements of Esther’s work I recall is the “Saving Innocence Challenge,” a reality TV show that saw girls from well off families go on an expedition to experience the reality of their underprivileged peers and seek to transform the lives of these disadvantaged girls,” he said.

Based on her outstanding work in Uganda, Nakajjigo was selected as one of the 16 young leaders worldwide to participate in the 2018 European Development Days (EDD) organised by the European Union institutions in Brussels, Belgium.

Grace Akulo, the CID Director praised Nakajjigo for her ideas that supported the Police in carrying out its mandate of fighting crime and more especially crime against women and girls.

“Esther was young but with great ideas. In 2017, she organised a programme and it was having all these girls who had dropped out of school, early marriages and connecting girls of schools like Gayaza High School to these children who were already having children,” said Akulo.

“This person of Esther is God sent. She was doing the right thing for the women and girls. We shall continue to support the office of the ambassador women and girls. They already have some cases which they reported. We are ready to pursue those criminal cases which were committed. As Police force, we have lost a partner,” Akulo added.

CID Director Grace Akulo giving her speech.

Prof Badru Katerega, the Vice Chancellor of Kampala University described the demise of Nakajjigo as an “irreparable loss.”

“It is an irreparable loss for all of us. I met H.E Esther in 2014 at National Theater when both of us were being honored with plaques for our exceptional, outstanding and selfless services towards the development of our country. We were honored together and I was wondering, what a small girl received a present almost equal to mine. I got interested in her,” he said.

The two bridged the gap between themselves and began working together in diverse areas most especially the protection of a girl child from teenage pregnancies.

“From 2014 till she passed on, I have really seen a talented, inspirational, calm, intelligent, gifted young lady. I have seen her metamorphosing from nowhere to somewhere. I have seen Esther tirelessly teaching, coaching and urging students in primary and secondary schools, young adults in universities, in refugee camps, in slums to jealously protect themselves from the rampant teenage pregnancies,” Prof Badru noted.

Badru called for maintenance and revamping of her projects so that through them, she can always be remembered.

Khalid Nyonjo, the Head Teacher of Princess Diana High School said that a mentor to many girls in Uganda as well as inspiration to many girls across the globe has been lost.

“As an institution, we are so privileged that the ambassador (Esther Nakajjigo) has been our student. As an institution, we are committed to continue implementing her programmes that have enabled many young girls across the country access education,” he said.

Nakajjigo’s friends

Nakajjigo was an old student at Princess Diana High School.

She was 25 years old at the time of her death.

She will be buried on Tuesday August 25, 2020 at Bulegeya in Masaka district.

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Charles Mbire gains $1.2 million as stake in MTN Uganda rises above $51 million



Ugandan businessman and MTN Uganda Chairman Charles Mbire has seen the market value of his stake in MTN Uganda surge above $51 million in just two days, as the share price in the leading teleco company increased by a single digit.

The single-digit bump in the share price caused the market value of Mbire’s stake to gain UGX4.42 billion ($1.24 million) in less than two days.

The million-dollar increase in the value of his stake came after Uganda’s largest telecom company delivered the country’s largest-ever IPO through the listing of 22.4 billion ordinary shares on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE).

Upon completing the largest IPO in Uganda’s history, MTN Uganda raised a record UGX535 billion ($150.4 million) from the applications that it received for a total of 2.9 billion shares, including incentive shares.

As of press time, Dec. 7, shares in the company were trading at UGX204.95 ($0.0574), down six basis points from their opening price this morning.

Data gathered by Billionaires.Africa revealed that since the telecom company registered its shares on the Ugandan bourse on Mon., Dec. 6, its share price has increased by 2.5 percent from UGX200 ($0.056) to UGX204.95 ($0.0574) as of the time of writing, as retail investors sustained buying interest long after the public offering.

The increase in the company’s share price caused the market value of Mbire’s 3.98-percent stake to rise from UGX178.45 billion ($49.96 million) to UGX182.86 billion ($51.2 million).

In less than two days, his stake gained more than UGX4.42 billion ($1.24 million).

In a statement after the successful listing of MTN Uganda’s shares, Mbire said the IPO shows the confidence that Ugandans and other investors have in the company, its brand and strategic intent.

“We commend all the regulators for their support in our work to become a USE-listed company and to comply in a timely manner with the listing provisions of the national telecommunications operators’ license,” he said.

Steady but sure-MBIRE who is the biggest investor on Ugandas Stock exchange with stocks valued at more than $55 million is laughing all the way to the bank after MTN declared the latest dividend payout.He has steadily grown his business empire which is believed to be more that $350 million (debt free).

Steady but sure-MBIRE who is the biggest investor on Ugandas Stock exchange with stocks valued at more than $55 million is laughing all the way to the bank after MTN declared the latest dividend payout.He has steadily grown his business empire which is believed to be more that $350. ( debt free).

He is into communications-revenue assurance-cement-distribution-oil services-real estate-oil exploration and logistics.

Source: Billionaires Africa

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2-year-old dies at Arua hospital as nurse demands Shs 210,000 bribe




A two-year-old child died at Arua Regional Referral hospital after a nurse, Paul Wamala demanded a bribe amounting to Shs 210,000 before carrying out an operation. 

The incident happened on Saturday, after Aron Nabil, a two-year-old child was referred to the hospital for an operation after he was diagnosed with intestinal obstruction, a medical emergency caused by a blockage that keeps food or liquid from passing through the small intestine or large intestine.

According to the relatives of the child, Wamala allegedly asked them to initially give him Shs 30,000 to buy medicines to commence the procedure. He however returned shortly asking for an additional Shs 180,000 from the relatives.

Emily Adiru, a resident of Osu cell, in Bazar Ward, Central Division, and a relative of the child says although they paid money to Wamala, he abandoned the child without carrying out the operation. According to Adiru, Wamala later refunded Shs 200,000 through mobile money, after she threatened to report him to the police.

“They told us this boy needs an operation which was supposed to be done in the morning on Sunday at around 7 am. They took him inside there, some doctor came from the theatre, he called one of us and said, we should pay Shs 70,000 for buying medicine to start the operation. We paid the Shs 30,000 [but] after paying the Shs 30,000, after some minutes, the same man came and opened the door and called us again, and told us we should pay another Shs 100,000. We also paid the Shs 100,000 and we thought it is finished. We were outside there waiting for our patient to come out [but] then this man came back again and said we should pay another Shs 80,000,” said Adiru.

Although the operation was later carried out after a 7-hour delay, the child didn’t make it, and relatives attribute the death to negligence. Miria Ahmed, a concerned resident wonders why such incidents have persisted at the facility which is supposed to service the citizens.

“Is the problem the hospital, is it the management or it is the human resource that is the problem in the hospital? A small child like this you demand Shs 210,000 for the operation? Well, if the money was taken and the operation is done, I would say anything bad but this money was taken and the small boy was abandoned in the theatre,” she said. 

When contacted Wamala refused to comment on the allegations. Dr Gilbert Aniku, the acting hospital director says that the hospital will issue an official statement later since consultations about the matter are ongoing.

Arua City resident district commissioner, Alice Akello has condemned the actions of the nurse saying she has ordered his arrest so as to set an example to the rest. The case has been reported to Arua regional referral hospital police post under SD reference No:05/30/05/2022.

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Mexican president’s Mayan Train dealt new legal setback | Tourism News




Activists say the planned tourist train will harm the wildlife and natural features of the Yucatan Peninsula.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has been dealt the latest setback to an ambitious plan to create a tourist train to connect the country’s southern Yucatan Peninsula.

On Monday, a judge indefinitely suspended construction on a portion of the project, known as the Mayan Train, saying the plans currently do not comply “with the proceedings of the environmental impact evaluation”.

The ruling follows a legal challenge by activists who said they were concerned the 60km (37 mile) portion of the train that would connect the resorts of Playa del Carmen and Tulum would adversely affect the area’s wildlife, as well as its caves and water-filled sinkholes known as cenotes.

The original plan for the disputed section was for an overpass over a highway, but the route was modified early this year to go through jungle at ground level.

The federal judge cited the “imminent danger” of causing “irreversible damage” to ecosystems, according to one of the plaintiffs, the non-governmental group Defending the Right to a Healthy Environment. In a statement, the group said that authorities had failed to carry out the necessary environmental impact studies before starting construction of the section.

Lopez Obrador had announced the ambitious project in 2018, with construction beginning in 2020. The roughly 1,500km (930 mile) cargo and passenger rail loop was presented as a cornerstone of a wider plan to develop the poorer states and remote towns throughout the about 181,000sq km (70,000sq mile) Yucatan Peninsula.

The railway is set to connect Caribbean beach resorts with Mayan archaeological ruins, with authorities aiming to complete the project by the end of 2023. The plan is estimated to cost about $16bn.

The project has split communities across the region, with some welcoming the economic development and connectivity it would bring. Others, including some local Indigenous communities, have challenged the project, saying it could not only disrupt the migratory routes of endangered species, including jaguars, tapirs and ocelots, but could also potentially damage centuries-old Mayan archaeological sites.

The National Fund for the Promotion of Tourism, the government agency overseeing the project, has said that it expects to “overcome” the latest challenge and that work should continue after an environmental impact statement is finalised. It said the Environment Ministry was currently reviewing its environmental application for the project.

For his part, Lopez Obrador has insisted the railway will not have a significant environmental effect and has accused activists of being infiltrated by “impostors”.

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