Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Dec. 15: Miss Uganda Quiin Abenakyo was crowned Miss World Africa at the 2018 Miss World finale in China. Quinn is the first Miss Uganda to make it to the top 5 finalists. The Miss World title went to Mexico’s Vanessa Ponce de Leon with Thailand’s Nicolene Limsnukan as first runner up. Abenakyo was second runner up. The 22-year old Bachelors of Business Computing graduate presented a beauty with a purpose project on teenage pregnancies in Uganda to sway supporters with her own story of being born prematurely and how she considers her survival a miracle.
Dec.09: Ugandan author wins Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature
Ugandan author and poet Harriet Anena was on Dec.09 announced joint winner of the Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature 2018 for her poetry anthology titled `A Nation in Labour’ published in 2015. She shared the prize with Prof. Tanure Ojaide. The Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature, worth US$10,000, is awarded every two years to the best book written by an African.
June 18: Uganda’s Dr Amos Nyathirombo co-founds River blindness drug
Dr Nyathirombo, 52, an eye specialist and lecturer in the Department of Ophthalmology at Gulu University found a new more effective cure for River Blindness drug. He was part of a team that did a six-year research under the World Health Organisation. The United States Food and Drug Administration agency announced on June 16 that it had approved Moxidectin 8 mg Oral for the treatment of River Blindness.
June 14: Brian Gitta won the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Africa Prize for Matibabu
Brian Gitta, 24, won the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Africa Prize for a device that detects tell-tale signs of malaria by shining a red beam of light on the patient’s finger. This is major win for a device which tests for malaria without drawing blood.
Sept.01: Former KCCA ED Jennifer Musisi and URA Commissioner General, Doris Akolw on the Africa Agent of Change award in recognition of their leadership efforts. They received the award at The Women Development Centre, in Abuja – Nigeria.
Sept 25: Uganda’s consultant pathologist, Dr Sylvester Onzivua, led the investigations a group of six scientists to make a breakthrough about Nodding Syndrome, concluding the condition is a result of abnormal deposit of protein in the brains. They did a year-long research that involved multiple examinations of brain tissues of children who died of Nodding Syndrome in northern Uganda. Prof Michael Pollanen from Forensic Pathology at the University of Ontario was co-leader with Onzivua together with Dr Janice Robertson, Dr Paul M McKeever, and Gulu University’s Prof. David Kitara, Dr. Francis Olwa and Dr. Amanda Fong.
Sept.25: Ugandan medical docto Jacqueline Akite and international scientists developed a new vaccine that stops the spread of pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) in adults. According to the findings published in The New England Journal of Medicine on Sept.25. Their vaccine is called M72/AS01E and offers 54% protection.
Sept. 28: Dr. Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka, a wildlife veterinary officer who worked with the Uganda Wildlife Authority, is named among the winners in the 2018 Sierra Club Awards. There are over 20 categories in the program and Dr. Kalema-Zikusoka won the EarthCare Award, which honours unique contributors to international environmental protection and conservation. Kalema is the founder of Conservation Through Public Health (CTPH), a nonprofit that promotes co-existence among people and animals.