By Agnes E. Nantaba
Elton Joseph Mabirizi is an Independent presidential candidate and gospel evangelist. He spoke to Agnes E Nantaba about pioneering politics in his family lineage.
Any three things we don’t know about you?
I am a Ugandan patriot who has been struggling to see that there is a peaceful transition from one government to another although I haven’t achieved it yet.
Like me, every member of our family is a humble person thanks to the Catholic background. By calling, I am an evangelist having started it 25 years ago with churches spread across the country under the Ambassadors of Jesus Christ Church.
I studied Electrical Engineering from Mengo Technical Institute and worked in the former Uganda Electricity Board as an engineer for eight years. That gives me vast experience in Uganda’s energy sector.
I am married to Winnie Mabirizi with whom we have three children. While most of the presidential candidates have a history of politics in their families, I am the pioneer of politics in my family.
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Happiness is self-made and not created by anything else.
What is your greatest fear?
I don’t have any fears; perfect love casts out fear.
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
I always want people to understand things my way.
What is the trait you most deplore in others?
I have learnt to tolerate and appreciate all characters because we are made different.
Which living person do you most admire?
John Ssebaana Kizito; he has made ‘clean’ wealth without traces of anyone claiming it.
What is your greatest extravagance?
Evangelism; I can’t think twice before spending on it.
What is your current state of mind?
With the stress of political campaigns, there is an element of agitation..
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Security; a lot is invested which doesn’t tally with the returns. If we could invest more in sectors like agriculture, the benefits would still extend to security.
If you are elected into office as the president of Uganda, what would you do in the first 100 days?
I would first set free all the innocent youths who are held in prison, then come up with a committee responsible for confiscating and selling off the properties of all people found guilty of corruption such that money is injected in critical sectors like agriculture and health.
On what occasion do you lie?
I can only lie to the devil to escape temptation.
What do you most dislike about your appearance?
I was created in God’s image and I appreciate the choice.
Which living person do you most despise?
I don’t despise anybody. However this doesn’t stop me from disliking a character or two in a person.
What is the quality you most like in a man?
Responsibility to self and family in action rather than just words.
What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Being in position to balance the roles of a mother, worker, and wife.
Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
‘Have faith in God’; it’s what I always tell people.
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
My mother, Alice Nabulya Nalongo; looking at how women currently abandon their roles as mothers, it makes me understand the great work she did to raise us all.
When and where were you happiest?
The day I prayed for a paretic and she walked again more than five years ago.
Which talent would you most like to have?
I have always wanted to be a keyboard player and I trained for over six months but failed.
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Confessing Jesus Christ as my personal savior at a young age and confirming it at 20 years.
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
I don’t want to make a second comeback in this world.
Where would you most like to live?
Uganda is best for living.
What is your most treasured possession?
My voice; I use it to preach the gospel and air out views.
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Starving for days.
What is your favorite occupation?
I yearned to be an engineer, worked for and achieved it .
What do you most value in your friends?
Trustworthy and being reliable.
Which historical figure do you most identify with?
King David in the Bible was always determined to excel
Who are your heroes in real life?
My mother, Pastor Isaac Kyobe and Nelson Mandela who achieved what he fought for after many years.
What is your greatest regret?
No regrets because I am a good planner.
How would you like to die?
Silently in my sleep at 75 years old; God already communicated my death age.
What is your motto?
Always take God’s report