Bukoto county East Member of Parliament Florence Namayanja was last month endorsed by the National Unity Platform (NUP) as the party flag bearer for Masaka City Mayor seat.
Namayanja, a tested and well experienced lawmaker has seen the good, the bad and the ugly side of politics. She has served the young and old folks ever since she rose into the political arena as the Kanyanya- Kkomamboga Chairperson in Kawempe Division in 1997.
During a one on one interview with the legislator at her home in along Villa Road in Masaka City, Namayanja spoke with a lot of vigour and confidence before asserting that she is the right person for the Mayoral role.
“A green City. A city with trade order and a theatre. A City with chambers and a museum. A city with a well-planned abattoir and a drainage master plant are what I intend to station in Masaka City,” states Namayanja.
The 60 year old politician is also an educationist who mastered the art of reading different manuscripts engraved in her living room. Namayanja reveals that politics has been on her never-ending to do list and growing up as a teen, she engaged in politics way back from high school.
As she takes a seat serenely at her dining table, Namayanja is quick like a wink to showcase some of the pictures she took during her political days as the Deputy Kampala City Mayor. This was during the reign of the late Nasser Ntege Sebaggala. RIP!
Namayanja who was born in October 1960 says the country’s current political sphere needs visionary leaders who are willing and able to sacrifice themselves for the betterness of their communities.
Born to the late John Kisomose Mukasa and Pirajiya Namatovu, Namayanja is the fifth born in the family of eight children. She is also mother of four children.
Namayanja attended Kyasuma Primary School, Blessed Sacrament Kimanya and Masaka Secondary School before switching to Uganda College of Commerce (UCC) in 1979.
“When I completed a Secretarial course at UCC, I started working in National Water and Sewerage Corporation as personal secretary to the then Director Hillary Onek but later I switched into politics as Kanyanya- Kkomamboga Chairperson in Kawempe Division in 1997,” she shares.
In 2001, Namayanja contested as Kampala District Councilor and later in 2006 she got appointed as the Deputy Kampala City Mayor and served with the late Sebaggala.
“My mother was a nursery teacher and my father was a business orientated man. From them, I learnt so many things. I grew in an environment full of men so I used to work hard like them one reason I stood for political positions,” Namayanja who worked for the National Water and Sewerage Cooperation as the deputy secretary and director for 20 years adds.
She is quite familiar with the political arena in the Masaka modern day City and many times Namayanja prefers seeking knowledge from veteran politicians such as the incumbent Masaka Municipality Member of Parliament Mathias Mpuuga than embedding herself in political wars.
“The period I served as the Deputy Kampala City Mayor I got a chance to travel outside the country. When I try to conceptualize what I saw in European Countries; USA and others that boast with beautiful Cities surely Masaka City too needs a new face,” she says.
Politics in general is about serving and advocating for betterness of the people one is serving. To this, Namayanja says she has been focal in ensuring that the locals in Bukoto East Constituency where she stood for two terms are served to the fullest.
“We have been willing to serve the locals since then. It is quite a good indicator for many of us who have served and still hold the zeal to serve,” adds Namayanja beaming with a lot of confidence.
The Masaka City which Namayanja has turned her guns onto has lived up to leaders mostly men; Tebyasa Matovu and Godfrey Kayemba currently the aspiring Member of Parliament for Kimannya/ Kabonera Constituency. Namayanja becomes the maiden women to raise the frag against men’s leadership in the race.
“It’s no crime to become the first ever women to lead Masaka City as the Mayor. I’ve always been willing to serve and being a woman I hope my fellow women in the area will be able to rally around with me to ensure that we engulf that post,” adds Namayanja.
Masaka became a city on July 1, 2020 following the long time lag and several interventions from Buganda’s Kabaka Ronald Mutebi II who acknowledged Masaka as a suitable area to become a City despite its past exclusion by the Ministry of Local Government.
According to Namayanja, Masaka City apparently is grappling to revive its past glory in leadership, historical sites for example Masaka Town Hall which was destroyed in 1986. She articulates that she is fit like a fiddle to solve the above impediment.
Previously, Namayanja has been working so hard to ensure that locals in different parts of Masaka grappling with problems such as; land grabbing and evictions get justice.
“I’ve worked closely with the local leaders to ensure that we change the lives of people,” she discloses.
Do you have a story in your community or an opinion to share with us: Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org