Just when everything seemed to be going according to plan on Friday this week, the news of Moses Koros’s death took the wind out of my sails.
He was found dead in his bed in the morning hours of Friday! Koros was a good childhood friend. After the university at Makerere in Uganda, he returned home to get a job.
He was looking forward to the day he will kiss goodbye to the countless years of struggle, perseverance, and patience.
At the university, he was determined to pay the price for the attainment of his dream no matter how high the price of achieving it may be.
But getting a job back home was not easy. It was a question of technical know-who or (whose son or daughter you are) and not know-how as it ought to be.
He tried but he could not get one because he was not highly ‘connected’. And even the job adverts in the papers are put for ‘just put for formality’.
He was told about the reality on the ground. Reality here means the status quo-the prevailing situation on the ground.
Koros was fed up and abandoned his country, migrated to Canada for green pasture. But in Canada, he could not find a job either.
By press time, the postmortem was not yet done to determine the cause of his death. Early reports had suggested Koros could have committed suicide out of frustration.
Just over two years ago, he sent me an e-mail to say he had not managed to secure a job and he was becoming ‘impatient’.
I met Koros briefly before he left for Canada to try his luck. Before we parted, I remember he closed his eyes and remembered few things from Arthur Koestler’s “Darkness at Noon”.
“The state is always right. You cannot blame it for failure to create jobs for its people. Nobody can listen to you,” Koros told me and walked a way.
Brain drain in Africa is very common. After attaining education, many youths leave their own countries for green pastures. Rwanda has tried to address this problem.
In 2005, the country launched Tokten which is designed to counter the effects of brain drain affecting developing countries.
It is aims at recapturing some of the experience of highly skilled expatriate professionals residing outside their countries of origin either permanently or temporarily.