Mary Begumisa; Daring Hanifa Kawooya to Serve Sembabule

By Wilson Kamukono

One of the biggest problems of people in love is that we can’t tell a false “salesman” smile from a genuine nurturing smile. One smile is delivered for the benefit of the smiler; it’s essentially predatory and self-serving. The second is delivered for us, the smile. It’s true, open, and giving.

Strongly positive and essentially equal exchange for both parties. Laid out in that manner, no rational person would choose to be in the presence of salesman smiles when he could choose a true smile instead.

Unfortunately, when people smile at us in real life their expressions do not come with honest interpretive guidebooks. We have to judge with the tools at hand, in our heads; heads which are all too often inadequate for the task.

So, how do you recognize the genuine smile; how do you tell the person who is true from the one who sees you as a resource to be used, enjoyed, and discarded?

Well, these such questions are never asked even in times such as the political seasons when people lie for votes, tales of an enemy for the people trend as popularity supersedes competence in the quest for political offices.

Mr and Mrs Begumisa

A powerful and lovely smile, with a string of beneficiaries from Mary Begumisa foundation for fifteen years meets my eye before we sit near Sembabule church of Uganda for an interview.

Born in 1976 in Nabiseke village Lwebitakuli sub county Sembabule district by late Augustine Mugisha and   Ms Madrine Kasiga .

She attended Lwebitakuli Primary school before joining Bukulula S.S Masaka for both A’ and O ‘level and later moved to pursue Diploma in secondary education majoring in English literature.

In 2000 she was appointed sub county chief in Rakai district and while there she was awarded a scholarship from the World Bank and studied a bachelor’s degree at Makerere University before she graduated in 2003.

After she graduated from Makerere she resigned the local government job and ventured in Tour and Travel. Together with her husband Mr Begumisa, they initiated Gorilla Trek Africa Limited and Africa Adventure Safaris both with offices in Kampala.

Gorilla Trek Africa has another branch office in Escondido, San Diego California USA.

Mary Begumisa

Her Political career started in 2001 when she vied for the same seat but lost to the incumbent Hanifer Kawooya when she polled 1100 against 1230 of Ms Kawooya .

“The polls then were marred with rigging and some big wigs then sabotaged the success of people of Sembabule although the district was   in shambles,” she said

Although her first lose it is not all gloom with Mary, in 2006, the selfless lady started Mary Begumisa foundation in sense of extending helping hand to her home area offering services among others education for vulnerable children , tree planting to conserve nature ,house construction for widows  and water dam construction to save farmers from water crisis in dry season.

Over 70 students from Sembabule have benefited from the foundation , the foundation extends to other parts of the country in Luuka Nawanyango sub county Kamuli district in Eastern Uganda and over  four students have benefited from the foundation scholarship that side.

Ms Begumisa indicates that loopholes in leadership and representation of matters of Sembabule district at the floor of parliament triggered her political ambitions which have been silent for 20 years since she last participated in politics.

She prides in offering over 200 computers to schools in Sembabule valued at a tune of Ugx 120 M , construction of three valley dams in Lwebitakuli and Matete sub counties , constructing four houses for the vulnerable including the fifth one in Rakai district, her former work place.

She says over 40 youths from Sembabule are employed in Mary Begumisa foundation and her tours and travel company where she is a director with her husband.

“The overwhelming support from People of Sembabule district requesting me to represent them have guided my decision and am  sure this time around we are taking the mantle to represent and serve our people,”

She indicates that her main focus in the term will be social service delivery citing that the district lacks well established schools, road networks, health centers and leader with Sembabule at heart.

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