Allan Brian Ssenyonga

Let the students compete more but in diverse fields

There are three interesting developments that caught my attention regarding education in East Africa. To be honest, anything to do with education always catches my eye. It is something I obsess about quite a lot. I am always proud to point out that I come from a lineage of teachers but also that I...

Sunday, February 5, 2017, 12:00 AM

There is a thick line between civic education and voter education

Several years ago when I was much smaller and a primary pupil, one of the things we were taught was civics. I don’t remember what exactly it was defined as then but I remember we were taught some things about our country. The national flag and what each colour meant, the national emblem and...

Sunday, January 29, 2017, 12:00 AM

All is well as that ends well, now we can watch AFCON

All is well that ends well. Friday was one of those days when the news mill was bursting at the seams thanks to the anxiety around two events in particular. It was a time when many were anxiously waiting to see what happens next and how it does. The analysts had already penned their...

Sunday, January 22, 2017, 12:00 AM

Nature can be such a bully when you fail to fix the basics

There was that children’s story where the sun and the wind decide to settle an argument on who was stronger than the other and could do so by torturing an ordinary man walking on the street. The wind, blowing hot and cold literally, argued that it could compel a man to take off his coat by...

Sunday, January 15, 2017, 12:00 AM

East Africa could do with a mega summit on education

One of the biggest businesses in East Africa these days is conferences, summits, dialogues or whatever you may choose to call them. There is a whole industry built around these conferences that feeds airlines, travel agents, hotels accommodation and meals, translation services, decorators, public...

Sunday, January 8, 2017, 12:00 AM

So much to expect on the political scene in 2017

Always as we move from one year to another, there is a surge in stale jokes about the whole experience with people talking about either the previous or new year as though they were actually 12 months away. If I were to join the band wagon I would say that I wrote this article last year and you are...

Sunday, January 1, 2017, 12:00 AM

Lessons learnt from a year of travelling around the region

Last year, I did a lot of travelling around East Africa and beyond. From these travels I picked up lots of lessons about life, society but most importantly, about the tourism industry or tourism. Many of those who picked the tab for my travels (and I am very grateful) counted on me to go out, see...

Sunday, January 1, 2017, 12:00 AM

Making the best out of the annual urban-rural migration

In East Africa, there is little doubt that Christmas marks the peak of the holiday season. This can be attributed to its predictability (the date is a fixed one each year) and the fact that it falls in the last week of the year when many are accorded some time off their busy work schedules. A few...

Sunday, December 25, 2016, 12:00 AM

Made in Rwanda and what it means to grow a local brand

When I was still a very small boy, there was this game I used to play with my young sisters of guessing what was written on a product. The game involved holding something and asking another person to guess where it was made. In those days many of the quality possessions we had at home in Uganda...

Sunday, December 18, 2016, 12:00 AM

In this age, an office is about efficiency not physical address

This has clearly been an interesting year on the news mill, not just because of the American presidential elections, but also because in Gambia the incumbent lost an election, conceded defeat, congratulated the winner but a week later changed his mind! For some of these events you don’t even...

Sunday, December 11, 2016, 12:00 AM

A new Africa calls for a new understanding and narrative

For a long time the dominant media spaces in the world have packaged and presented a worrying template on African life. This is a template that highlights conflict, poverty and disease as the outstanding markers of life on this vast continent. These are arguably the only reason we are easily...

Sunday, December 4, 2016, 12:00 AM

This festive season should be about Remarkable Rwanda

The tourism industry in this part of the world has some rather interesting characteristics. For a long time this industry was seen and packaged in foreign eyes. The target audience was tourists from Europe and America while locals only a part of it as low level staff for hotels and as tour guides...

Sunday, December 4, 2016, 12:00 AM

Tree planting is definitely a wise investment for the future

There are days when I wake up and tune into one of the 24 hours news channels so I can get a glimpse of what is happening around the world. To know how bad the situation is in Aleppo, whether South Africa’s Jacob Zuma is surviving another scandal or how the rest of the world will adjust to a...

Sunday, November 27, 2016, 12:00 AM

Rwanda as a cycling nation is indeed a scenic spectacle

Sports events always easily bring people together where many social activities struggle to for the same attention. The global sports industry is now undoubtedly one of the biggest money machines.  There is too much money in sports that even countries that formerly espoused communist ideals...

Sunday, November 20, 2016, 12:00 AM

We are all tour guides and yet not all of us are informed

The ongoing push for domestic tourism has elicited mixed reactions from the public. Obviously, the awakening can be traced to Kenya’s troubles that arose from security lapses that brought down its tourism sector. Facilities that had never seen the value of locals beyond having them as staff...

Sunday, November 13, 2016, 12:00 AM

It is better to guard the learning process than the exams

The noise from the American elections is about to go down now that Election Day is around the corner.  It is indeed such a noisy election season that Hamid Dabashi, an Iranian-American professor at Columbia University recently described it as, “the epitome of a disgraceful public...

Sunday, November 6, 2016, 12:00 AM

US elections and what we could learn from the circus

In less than 10 days Americans will have decided who is going to step into the rather big and cool shoes of President Barrack Obama. Their choices on which person will be have been narrowed down to mainly the seasoned politician, Hillary Rodham Clinton and the enigmatic tycoon, Donald John Trump....

Sunday, October 30, 2016, 12:00 AM

Dear East Africans, pride should be cushioned by efficiency

Social media seems to have closed a gap that traditional media was reluctant to seal. A few years back, I used to whine a lot about how events happening in another country within the region deserved to be given serious attention by the traditional media in the individual East African countries. My...

Sunday, October 23, 2016, 12:00 AM

No one is pulling out of anything, we are in this together

So much has happened this past week that if I were to comment on it all I would have a book to my name. There were the big stories like the Kigali amendment to the Montreal Protocol that was adopted after deliberations that went on for hours and the launch of medical supplies delivery drones that...

Sunday, October 16, 2016, 12:00 AM

Domestic tourism is an extension of the independence process

As you read this, Ugandans are celebrating their 54th Independence Day. This time last year, I wrote that independence is more of a process than an event and many countries in the region still have to keep working at it primarily by taking charge of their own development process. Achieving...

Sunday, October 9, 2016, 12:00 AM

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