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Take responsibility to change the nation, Ambassador tells youth


US Ambassador to Uganda Deborah Malac has challenged youth and students in particular to take up the responsibility to drive change in the country.

“The youth ought to value hard work, dedication and teamwork as partners to take responsibility of change in the nation. The future is not lost. It belongs to you, and you have the power to decide what kind of country Uganda will be,” Ambassador Malac said at a Public Administration and Governance symposium on Wednesday.

The Post-Election Symposium on Youth, Democracy and Governance was organised by the Uganda Christian University society and was attended by over 300 students of Political Science and Public Administration from Kyambogo, Makerere and Uganda Christian University. Several political activists also attended the symposium at Hotel Africana.

Deborah Malac was joined in the discussion by former minister Miria Matembe, Makerere’s Dr. Nasozi Mwanga and UCU’s Christopher Twesigye Christopher in the discussion.
“Yes, youth are frustrated. Many fear Uganda may never live up to its potential. But as I have told them, and will tell you now: That is simply not true. Uganda is filled with unlimited potential and energy, and you will be able to achieve great things. I believe it, and I hope you do, too.”

Malac said that despite what she considered democratic set-backs in Uganda, USA will continue to invest in individuals through programs organised under the U.S Mission. Malac said they were concentrating on individuals and NGOs due to mismanagement of funds.
“United States is not going to walk away from the Ugandan people, especially its youth. We will continue to work with you to help build the kind of country you want to see.”

Key remarks by Miria Matembe
“We need transformative leadership as a result of people’s demand. Uganda can be redeemed only by people of integrity, driven purposed, determined and assets in their communities (solve problems).”
“President Museveni is a product of rigged elections that has led to a spirit of fear, hopelessness among citizens. The president promised to get rid of opposition leaders within 5years after he had been won elections isn’t a sign of democracy,”

Key remarks by Dr. Nasozi Mwanga
“Vote buying, voter intimidation, vote and ballot stuffing have become the common features part of election process. Manifestos promise impossibilities, elected candidates aim at gaining state power and victimising public funds. We are ruled under deficit governance that needs to be addressed from different levels like national, regional and district.”

Key remarks by Christopher Twesigye
“It is telling that 40% were unwilling to go and cast their votes beside the 60% that voted. These were ‘Free and fair elections’ characterised by police intimidation, monetisation of elections”
“Youth don’t leave the future of our country to the men and women of yesterday that are in the evening of their lives.”
FULL Remarks for Ambassador Malac

Good afternoon. I am honored and pleased to be here and to join the other guests today for this discussion on youth, democracy and governance. These are crucial issues that matter, not just to me or the United States. The future of Uganda is of course critically important to all of you, as the future leaders, innovators, and entrepreneurs of Uganda. I hope today that we can have an open and frank discussion on the state of Uganda’s democracy and governance. I also hope this is the beginning of an ongoing conversation that involves Uganda’s youth and the country’s development.

Let me begin today by talking about the recent elections. I arrived in Uganda just before February 18. I talked with young voters who queued for hours waiting for ballot materials. I saw and heard their frustration.

Many of you here have seen or read the statements either the Embassy or the U.S. government made concerning the elections. In them, we have expressed our serious concerns about the elections and their aftermath.


  1. Miria Matembe lies like a fisherman. Let her produce evidence that the 9 Supreme Court Judges were all fools and also that she is more credible or more honest than all of them.
    I think she should eat humble pie.

  2. Ms Malac, a look at one Charles Rwomushana – much respected by US/EU embassies here – may give you some insight into our elite. He produced a photo of a dead man claiming it was of the Christopher Aine who just resurfaced in Uganda. Rwomushana wept during a TV talk show, uttering innuendoes that Museveni had a hand in Aine’s death.
    Look at Museveni’s ‘loss’ to Besigye in the recent poll the very way you look at the Christopher Aine saga. Know that our Supreme Court has merit, its judges are faultless. And Uganda’s only fault is that the Americas of this World must look down on it as they prepare to steal its wealth.

  3. Ms Malac, you state; ‘These rights are guaranteed in Uganda’s laws, and the government should not sacrifice them in the name of stability’. You are stating that stability is subordinate to individual’s interests especially when it is known that your state Department summoned this individual to London and tried to cajole him into vacating political space for your blue-eyed boy Mbabazi!

    This statement is a clear indicator of your country’s ulterior intentions toward poor African states.

    You’re simply saying; “sacrifice the stability of your country for the comfort of the individual we (Americans) are hobnobbing with – or you will see what we shall do to you’!

    In your wisdom, one citizen’s interests/rights overwhelmingly eclipse those of us the rest – as long as this takes place in puny Africa.

    If you are correct, why did your FBI so decisively attack and flatten (pulverize) David Koresh’s (Davidian religious sect) camp killing the thousands of ‘innocent’ souls whimpering away therein?

    Do not be (mis)used by my fellow Ugandan elite. You’ll soon learn that they follow their emotions and never reason when they want attention (so as to visit your country for ever).

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