Allan Brian Ssenyonga

East Africa should look beyond Ubumwe’s wings

Without a doubt, the biggest story this past week was the reception of RwandAir’s Airbus A330-200, the first of its kind in the East African region and crucial addition to the RwandAir fleet of nine. The plane made a symbolic stop at Uganda’s Entebbe International Airport in the only...

Sunday, October 2, 2016, 12:00 AM

The Masai Mara allows you to literally get lost in the wild

What would you do if you were moving in the middle of a game park and you were attacked by a lion? Do you run and climb a tree? Do you pick stones and throw at it? Maybe you put up a fight so that your ancestors can pat you on the back when you finally meet them, for not having been a coward at...

Sunday, September 25, 2016, 12:00 AM

Technological advancements call for a new discussion on skills

Height is always something that fascinates most of us. When one moves from a rural area to the city the fascination is usually not so much about the cars but the height of the buildings. Someone who is new in a city is likely to ask about which building is the tallest and how tall it is. In my...

Sunday, September 25, 2016, 12:00 AM

How mobile money demystified Africa for investors

Last week, we were reminded of how linked we are as a region when an earthquake hit the Tanzania lake shore town of Bukoba and the tremors were felt as far as Bujumbura, Kigali, Kampala and Busia in Kenya. I was sitting on my desk when I felt the tremors here in Kigali. My first instinct was to...

Sunday, September 18, 2016, 12:00 AM

Culinary tourism answers the crucial 'what to do' question

Last month, the Financial Times published a travel story where they asked readers to submit their travel recommendations on where to go, what to do, worst experiences, books to read when travelling and so much more. Being a travel enthusiast, I went through the story and one line caught my eye. A...

Sunday, September 11, 2016, 12:00 AM

Kwita Izina always presents lots of learning opportunities

I spent most of last week away from home and on the road with several tourism enthusiasts. With an array of activities organised by Rwanda Development Board to precede the 12th Gorilla Naming ceremony – Kwita Izina, there was so much to learn and ponder. I love the fact that the event...

Sunday, September 4, 2016, 12:00 AM

Rwanda's tourism menu is now a buffet situation

Restaurants can easily be categorised by the size and type of menus they have in place. I’ve been to quite a number and I am always fascinated by what they have to offer and how it is presented. In some big restaurants you will be presented with a drinks menu, then one for starters another for...

Sunday, September 4, 2016, 12:00 AM

Sustainable tourism and conservation concern us all

The Olympic Games finally came to an end with the marathon race where typically a Kenyan and an Ethiopian were ahead of the pack. East Africa was also happy to celebrate a silver medal for Burundi in the 800 meters while a Tanzanian coming fifth in the marathon was proof that the region sure does...

Sunday, August 28, 2016, 12:00 AM

Don't change your name, change your attitudes

Last week, I wrote about why we always end up sending more officials than athletes to events like the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I narrowed it down to our failure to see sports as a business investment that needs to be taken a lot more seriously. Inculcating a mindset of sports as...

Sunday, August 21, 2016, 12:00 AM

Why we excel at sending more officials than participants

Every four years the world gets to witness the spectacle that is the Olympic Games. This year Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro is the host of these games. This city is famed for its Copacabana beaches, the 38 meter statue of Jesus Christ and also its shanty towns (Favelas) and flamboyant carnival...

Sunday, August 14, 2016, 12:00 AM

It is that time again when the Kenyans rub it in

The Olympic Games are back and Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro has done all it could to get to this day despite the endless reports of how they were not ready to host the games due to preparation delays and that thing virus called Zika. Interestingly, we have seen this trend each time a country that...

Sunday, August 7, 2016, 12:00 AM

Did you know that there is an EAC anthem?

Technology on our phones has tried to solve so many life puzzles that these days it is the reference point for almost anything. You ask a friend what schizophrenia is and they will not accept that they don’t know. Instead, they will just say, Google it. Sometimes if I can’t trace a...

Sunday, July 31, 2016, 12:00 AM

Watamu's big five, dolphins and conservation efforts

Travelling around East Africa exposes one to the warmth of the people in this region. In places where Swahili is the language of choice a departing guest will likely hear the phrase, “Karibu tena.” It is an initiation to return and pointer to how welcoming we are as a people. So when I visited...

Sunday, July 31, 2016, 12:00 AM

We can do a lot more to improve travel in Africa

So much has been said about the much hyped African passport that was launched at the recently concluded African Union summit held in Kigali, Rwanda. Most of those who have commented have basically written it off as another fancy idea that doesn’t solve the real issues facing African...

Sunday, July 24, 2016, 12:00 AM

AU needs to help South Sudan clear its house

The big story in this lovely region of ours is the Rwandan hospitality that delegates as well as heads of state attending the African Union Summit are enjoying in Kigali. For many who have been hearing of Rwanda like a distant rumour, the summit has been an opportunity to touch, feel and smell the...

Sunday, July 17, 2016, 12:00 AM

Dear AU delegates please teach and learn a little, while here

The 27th African Union Summit starts today here in Rwanda. This is a moment that Rwandans have spent quite a long time waiting for. Even before you talk about the summit itself, Rwandans had spent long waiting for the magnificent facility that is hosting the summit to take shape and come to life....

Sunday, July 10, 2016, 12:00 AM

True liberation ought to bring about national pride

Rwandans are still going through what is clearly a very long weekend. This is because Friday was Independence Day while tomorrow will be Liberation Day. That means that some people left office on Thursday and will next be seen on Tuesday and soon after may again stay...

Sunday, July 3, 2016, 12:00 AM

Lamu, where donkeys have right of way

There are places in East Africa that you visit and smile at the overwhelming beauty right before you. And when you get back to your miserable settings you can’t stop talking about your recent visit and showing off the great photos you took as evidence. Then there is Lamu. Lamu is different. Lamu...

Sunday, July 3, 2016, 12:00 AM

Why I think our EAC cannot get to a 'Brexit' point

Brexit this, Brexit that. If you love counting then you have already seen the word Brexit four times now but I am sure you have probably not been counting how many times you have heard or read about it since Friday morning. It turns out that 17.4 million British people voted for Britain to leave...

Sunday, June 26, 2016, 12:00 AM

Great pictures should be the ones to define and sell us

Of late my mind has been quite preoccupied with the immense power of pictures. We all know the 1,000 words cliché but I am not really interested in counting those words. Instead I am thinking about the emotions that come with the pictures we get exposed to and the stories they tell. I don...

Sunday, June 12, 2016, 12:00 AM