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Dark history still affects Uganda’s image in South Korea – Envoy

FILE PHOTO: South Korean Ambassador to Uganda Ha Byung-Kyoo.

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The South Korean Ambassador to Uganda Ha Byung-Kyoo has said that relations between Uganda and South Korea are still very low due to Uganda’s bad history.

According to Kyoo, many South Koreans are still scared of visiting Uganda, thinking it is still a dangerous, unsafe country, where people are mistreated by the regime, akin to incidences from Idi Amin’s reign of terror which involved a widespread violation of human rights.

Kyoo was addressing students of Kabale University during a public lecture at the University in Kabale district on Tuesday. He said that because of the dented history, many South Korean tourists avoid Uganda and opt for the neighbouring countries of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo to track mountain gorillas.

He, however, says that efforts to improve the relationship of both governments are underway adding that by next year Uganda will have an embassy in South Korea.

Kyoo also expressed concern over the lack of a saving culture among Ugandans despite the availability of natural resources, tourist attractions and good climate conditions to help them generate income.

During the same meeting, Kabale University Vice-Chancellor Professor Joy Kwesiga hinted that the University was still struggling to attract qualified personnel, among its academic staff.

According to Kwesiga, many of the lectures in Kabale University today, possess Masters degrees compared to the required PhDs. Without revealing the number Kwesiga, however, said that the University has resorted to sponsoring most of them for upgrading to make sure that they obtain PhDs.




  1. This guy says Koreans are worried of Uganda when the issues they bring about (Idi Amin) was in 1979. Yet they go to Rwanda where people butchered themselves like chicken in 1994? Rubbish.

  2. Thanks for your comment. What I said, actually not in the lecture but at the meeting with the leadership of Kabale university, was as follows;
    – Unfortunatelly, Uganda is not so well-known to Korean people. The image of Uganda to many Koreans is still that of 1970s. I hope that more Korean tourists will visit to this beautiful country, and Uganda’s wrong image to Koreans should be corrected for that purpose. The opening of Ugandan embassy in Korea is vital here. Unlike Uganda, Uganda’s neighboring countries are actively promoting their country to Koreans through their embassies in Korea, and thanks to such efforts many Korean tourists visit Uganda’s neighboring countries. (Rwanda’s image of genocide is all gone to Koreans thanks to the efforts of Rwandan embassy in Korea)
    – In this respect, I welcome the decision of Ugandan government and parliament to open Ugandan embassy in Korea. Opening Ugandan embassy in Korea will surely bring more Korean investors and tourists to Uganda.
    This was my message at the meeting. I hope this will clears the misunderstanding.
    Byung-Kyoo Ha, Korean Ambassador to Uganda

    • Thanks your Excellency Korean Ambassador to Uganda; Mr. Byung Kyoo Ha for that positive input and correction.
      I look forward to visit the beautiful country of Korean with my small family soon but I don’t know where to start from regarding Visa issues.
      Your advice and assistance would be highly appreciated.

  3. My dream is to go to South Korea, how can I make that become true

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