On 20th march through the president’s Twitter handle we received the saddest and most shocking news of the passing of the famous speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanya. Whereas some errant bloggers had been announcing him dead but ofcource we thought these were just haters who have done it before to other leaders, no one knew that Jacob would surely leave as early as now. We thought he would fight through and be with us a little longer since we had not seen him get ill frequently and maybe lose hope in his recovering. Watching the footages of the speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanya on Television and other media platforms you indeed see a heroic speaker that was full of life and enjoyed whatever he did. In fact, you easily get lured to also love what Jacob Oulanya did. His smile and sense of humor both in his speeches and whatever he did made everything interesting and enjoyable. At times he would Jokes while presiding over the house sending the entire parliament into laughter.
Jacob Oulanya has been a unique leader who never created any space between him and the people of Uganda. He was free to both the rich, the poor and those without titles, I cannot tell how many times I interacted with him even when he didn’t know me physically. At times I would Wonder a number three in the country’s protocol responding to text messages sent to him. I would ask my self, How many text messages does he receive in a day? How comes he responds to all of them? How about his other work of running parliament and his other private business? But anyways, I would understand that Jacob Oulanya is a rare character that the almighty God had gifted us with.
I have seen stories of him on Television about the projects he was working on and those he had finished. One of those left me wondering, Jacob Oulanya had built and completed the teacher’s houses at his former primary school but he had not yet completed his own house. This is very interesting indeed because most Politicians we have in Uganda would first mind about themselves before looking at the community. He would have finished his Bangalow and make it look like a semi-heaven before embarking on other projects in the community. But Jacob chose to first build a church and complete it and the teacher’s houses at his Former primary school. He is the example of whatever he spoke about hence putting down the doctrine of the politician’s philosophy of talking alot while doing completely nothing.
Losing Jacob should not send us into unnecessary pain and weeping, it should not move us to make moving eulogy, it should not make us complain alot but rather put focus on his way of life, his humility, his tolerance, his wise leadership, His generosity, his commitment to serve, His godliness and openness so that we pick lessons from all that and make our country better.
We need another Jacob Oulanya from Northern Uganda who will follow the character of the fallen speaker and do alot of things for the people in that part of the country. We need a new Jacob Oulanya in the parliament of Uganda who will mind about time and put focus on the issues that affect the people of Uganda not frequent useless politicking. We need a new Jacob Oulanya in the leadership we have in the country, to be generous enough and give those who don’t have, give to the church and even the community he comes from. We need a new Jacob Oulanya in the National Resistence Movement party who will get guide the party to take a correct party and mobilise the entire regions not these modern Cadres who only look at their Constituencies. God gifted us with a heroic speaker, of whom we should all study, pick lessons and build a strong and great country. Fare-thee-well Ladit Jacob Oulanya.
The writer is a deputy RDC Kyenjojo District.
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