Kampala, Uganda – By E K Benj.
Top Ugandan women in leadership have today (Thursday 12 November 2020) received accolades in recognition of their achievements in a male dominated society and inspiring them into bearing fruit that endures .
This has been during Executive Women Prayer Breakfast organised by the Bible Society of Uganda at Golf Course Hotel in Kampala.
The ceremony began with hymns of praise and worship led by members of the Bible Society followed with a prayer session led by the head of the Church of Uganda Bishop Samuel Stephen Kazimba Mugalu( born 15 August 1962) . The Anglican bishop was on 28 August 2019 elected to serve as the ninth Archbishop of Uganda and Bishop of Kampala, effective 1 March 2020.
During this session the man of God also prayed for generous guests who were requested and expressed interest to join the Bible society as life members (To become a life member one is obliged to pay UGX 1,000,000m).
Bishop Kazimba also appreciated those who came out to support the New Bible House Building Project by the Bible Society of Uganda- BSU.
The BSU Mission of providing affordable Holy Scriptures in languages and media that communicate effectively to the people, calls for a strong sustainability plan. BSU 2019-2023 Strategic Plan projects the establishment of a commercial seven (7) floor building with two (2) basement parking on Plot 38 Bombo road over a two year period 2021-2022.
FENCON Engineering Consultants the contracted Architects have delivered on the designs BSU acquired the needed approvals from Kampala Capital City Authority -KCCA and National Environment Management Authority – NEMA.
The New Bible House will cost UGX 30 Billion and the funding model is as summarised;
1. Canaan Construction Company Limited (Soft Loan) – UGX 16.5 Billion
2. The Bible Society of Uganda (available funds) – Near Cash IGX 3.5 Billion
3. Short fall (needed funds) – UGX 10 Billion totalling 30 Billion
The Guest Speaker Mrs Ruth Kawuma , President Uganda mothers’ Union during her speech noted that most women take on leadership during a time of crisis.
She also revealed that there women at the top but getting small pay than the men under them which she said shouldn’t happen. And while they climb, some have been used as sexual objects of exploitation which she said her colleagues at Bank of Uganda termed as “thigh power”
She warned “If a woman uses her body to climb to leadership, her position will be short lived.” Adding that tears and sex are not weapons they should use.
Also cautioned women on brushing aside negative thinking ‘how will my husband take it if I earn more money than him?’
Mrs Kawuma also mentioned women CEOs who some times turn to be tea girls at office simply because of natural roles while with men. “They’re employees to do that, after taking tea in boardroom, just leave.”
She told women not to become men in character “ God gave us unique traits, we under go menstruation, carry babies , menopause therefore we can’t be men, don’t put on trousers.”
Kawuma called for purity amongst women and also urged them not to be jealousy . “Because she wears my dress, drives a better car- then you fire her!” Stop that, she said.
She also called upon women to balance work and family asking them to learn to delegate.
She gave 2 examples of women; Esther in the Bible who was an influential leader, challenged the lives of Jews for ever quoting Esther 14 -such a time like this. “It doesn’t matter wether your parents are unknown like Esther but the impact you do in Uganda.” Kawuma added.
Another one is Deborah in the Book of Judges 4 who was a military leader and a Judge. She stressed that leaders who don’t work will have their people perish.
First Lady Speech.
Mrs Dorothy Kisaka , Executive Director Kampala Capital City Authority -KCCA represented the Guest of Honour, First Lady Janet Kataha Museveni and minister of Education & Sports who is currently on Political trail with President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni in West Nile.
Kisaka read Mama Janet’s speech who appreciated the Bible Society of Uganda for inviting her to officiate at this special event where Christian Women leaders who have risen to the positions that were previously dominated by men we’re recognised.
She appreciated the role played by The Bible Society of Uganda in spreading the word of God by translating and publish the Bible to benefit Ugandans as well as ensure that the Bible is distributed throughout the Country and the Citizens read it. “This has helped shape our society and firmly root Godly values.” She noted.
Museveni thanked the Bible Society Board, Simon Peter Mukhama the Secretary General and the staff for the invaluable contribution.
She also congratulated all Women Leaders who have risen to key positions that were previously dominated by men upon this elevation. “You have indeed broken the glass ceiling and paved the way for generations to come, for your daughters and daughters’ daughters.” She said quoting Romans: 13:1, ‘there is no authority except that which God has established’. “I believe that its God who has appointed you in these positions. We celebrate you and pray that his Grace will sustain you in your place of leadership, that you will excel more than you can ask or even imagine.” She added.
Statement of the First Lady.
I know your path has not been easy to get to this level. You have encountered many challenges to get here and successfully overcome them. Many of you will identify with these:1. Lifestyle choices/work life balance, family choices/ juggling the seasons of life.2. The stereo-type statement of ‘women can’t do that’3. The late bloomer phenomena feeling that you are too old to do certain things.
Now that God has put us in these positions, I implore you to be good stewards of what God has entrusted you with. I pray that you can faithfully take care of the Garden that the Lord has entrusted you with.
Sisters and brothers, we are here to support the Bible Society of Uganda to spearhead the cause of building the new Bible House. As the life member and at the same time a Christian (First Lady) who laid the foundation stone of the current Bible House, I am delighted to support this cause by Contributing UGX 10 Million (Ten Million Uganda Shillings only). We are not just building a Bible House; we are laying a foundation of faith in our land. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and to my path. I have taken an oath and confirmed it that I will follow your laws. May the Almighty God lead you to give back to his project
For God and My Country.
Kisaka delivered the UGX Ten Million wrapped in a big white envelope and latter handed accolades to several Top women including;
Faith Essy Kalikwani Mwondha a lawyer and judge who has served as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Uganda, since 8 September 2015.
Anne Juuko an investment banker and corporate executive, who is the managing director and chief executive officer of Stanbic Bank Uganda Limited, the largest commercial bank in the country, by assets, valued at US$1.6 billion in June 2019. She took up this appointment on 1 March 2020.
Brigadier Flavia Byekwaso a military officer, who serves as an elected member of parliament representing the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) in the 10th Parliament (2016–2021). She is also the Spokesperson of the UPDF.