“I grew up with a single mother who was a peasant. She was a gardener and struggled a lot to make ends meet,” starts Cleophas Tukamalwa a practicing journalist at Monitor Publications Limited.
Born to late Peter Bampalana and Mary Bakundine residents of Bulunga village, Mpumudde Sub County in Lyantonde District 30 years ago, Tukamalwa looks at politics as a big aspect in his life. He has grown from a practicing journalist into a man very hopeful to lead the people he has been working in as a journalist.
Tukamalwa is very optimistic that he will lobby for the people of Lyantonde than squeezing stories from them every day.
“I know their problems. I’ve worked steadily with them and I know what it means to be a good leader. Journalism in particular has given me a platform to meet loads of people and I’ve seen people dying because of hunger in villages,” share Tukamalwa.
A soft-spoken man, beaming with a lot of confidence and eager to lead all explains who Tukamalwa stands to be.
Tukamalwa’s journalism story started way back after attaining a Diploma in Mass Communication.
“I got a chance to lead a huge group people under their umbrella, Lyantonde Journalists Association. I’ve served them since 2016 as their president and from them I’ve learnt a lot of things,” he said.
Much as he is journalist covering politics mainly in Lyantonde, Tukamalwa contested as Lyantonde District Youth Councillor and later lost the elections but that didn’t stop him from achieving his dream.
“I think when I lost in 2016, it was simply a learning cave for me. It just prepared me to compete better for the District Chairperson role,” says Tukamalwa.
He says Lyantonde District has blossomed under the leadership of Fred Muhangi but they’re conversely looking for a fresh new blood.
“When you’re in politics people believe that you’re against someone’s contribution to the society which is not the case. I’ve solely stood against Mr Muhangi because I believe as a district we would’ve been very far,” he says.
Among the subjects Tukamalwa has highlighted to dwell with include; health, sports and infrastructure development in the area.
“I’ve covered a lot of stories on pregnant women dying because of little attention given to them during their maternity days. Many have been buried,” says Tukamalwa. The notable areas remains; Kinuka Subcounty, Lyakajuna and other areas which are far from Lyantonde General Hospital.
“I hope to station an ambulance in the community so that expectant mothers are catered for in time,” he says.
Since farming is also a booming business in Lyantonde, Tukamalwa hopes to station water reservoirs in the area.
“Especially in Ankole Corridors, farmers have been grappling with water scarcity and I think we can do something for the locals,” he says.
Tukamalwa says, he hopes to work with community leaders to distribute clean water in the area. As a district, Lyantonde was chopped from Masaka and apparently they are grappling with poor roads which has left most of the businesses at a standstill.
“Market for the processed products such as Milk and crop production has faced a lot infrastructural challenges,” shares a National Resistance Movement Member but preferred vying on Independent ticket.
As someone who grew up in the deep villages of Lyantonde and later became a focal journalist in the area, Tukamalwa hopes to inspire youths if he retains the district chairman seat.
“I am the third last in the family of 4 children and I know what it means to grew up in the family of struggling parents and later make it,” he softly shares.
Tukamalwa attended Nsiika Primary School, Mole and Paul High School before enrolling for Bachelor’s Degree in Information Technology.
“I think Mr Mathiew Lukyekire formerly Kabula County MP inspired a lot. He served one term and later stepped down. What he did remains on the ground and he served well despite his short spell in serve,” Tukamalwa said.
“It is high time for young people to pull up their socks and look for leadership positions,” concludes Tukamalwa.
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