It is with great pleasure that we introduce to you, Nancy Kalembe. She is the only female candidate running for the presidency of the Republic of Uganda, 2021. She was kind enough to accord us some time out of her busy schedule to interview her and find out more about this lady who has taken a fearless step towards influencing the mountain of governance. Becoming a presidential candidate. Well, let’s just dive into the conversation.
Please tell us more about Nancy Kalembe. Who exactly is she?
Well, I am a Ugandan, born and bred in Uganda. I come from the family of George Patrick and Ida Cissy Bageya in Iganga district. I studied Population Studies, majoring in Actuarial Science at Makerere University. I have worked across different fields and industries namely advertising, oil and gas, media and banking to mention but a few. I believe that this is the training God chose to take me through so that I experience what people have gone through. I am grateful for this training for it has made me a multifaceted presidential candidate.
“A Community is like a ship. Everyone ought to be prepared to take the helm.”Henrik Ibsen
What are you passionate about?
I am passionate about service. I have been serving since childhood in various arenas including church. I have served in different capacities including heading the Women’s Ministry and Prayer teams at my church. Most recently, I was part of the National Fellowship for The Born Again Pentecostal Churches as Minister of Finance. I have also supported different organisations in women empowerment through counselling and career guidance like WISE Empowerment whose mission is to help young girls stay in school. Recently, I was part of a rehabilitation for Prostitutes program that helped to find them jobs.
What led To You standing for the presidency of the Republic of Uganda?
I was fourteen years old in Senior One where I believe God spoke to me about this vision. At the time, it was just a voice that I couldn’t identify. As I grew older, it became clearer. My vision then was to finish school, get married and raise my kids. Be an everyday normal person.
But as I grew older, a different fire began to burn. My calling became more apparent as I became uncomfortable with where I was. I have never been in the political arena nor do I have a war chest to run a robust campaign. However this is a walk of faith. I have decided that if this is the journey God has sent me on, then I will go and serve to the best of my ability.
So as time went on, I began to see the injustices being done in Uganda and the things being said about Uganda and Ugandans. For example, Whilst on holiday in a certain country, a joke was said,” Who is going to Sin city for the weekend?” I was confused so I asked what Sin city was. Oh! That’s Uganda was the reply. I was flabbergasted. People were calling my country Sin city- That what happens in Uganda stays in Uganda. They then went on to say,” All we do in Uganda is have fun and come back to our countries.”
This portrayed a terrible brand! Having worked in advertising, I saw the discouraging perception of our nation. I went to live in Nigeria at a time when it was known for corruption, theft and murders. But while I was there, I saw it’s transition.
They deliberately came together as a nation to change their brand. They began to go out of their way to be kind and courteous and would ask foreigners, ”Where are you from? Please when you go back, tell your people that we are good people.”
All this was to build a different brand where they have now grown to be leading in business and efficiency. This made me realize that there is something that can be done for Uganda.
What has been the hardest part of this journey?
The first was convincing my family, because I was going to expose them to the public. Telling my family that I want to step into an arena where they think my life is in danger 24/7. Of course, the Elders are worried about my security while the younger ones are worried about losing their freedom because they will be thrust into the spotlight.
Uganda as it is, it is almost a crime to run for this high seat. It is my and any Ugandan’s constitutional right to run for the highest office and other public offices. However the air and vibe feels like you are committing treason.
Unfortunately this creates a lot of fear where some of my friends don’t even want to pick up my calls. I approached a number of people to endorse me and introduce me to the country because they know me and my character. More often than not, I was turned down with a “ You know what, I don’t want my business to suffer.”
This is not the way it should be. In a normal and healthy society, we should be encouraged to take up all sorts of positions of service such as this one. But one of the hardest things has been the mindset that once I am running for presidency, I am persona non-grata. You become a leper overnight!
I pray a time will come where Ugandans will want to run for public offices because they want to serve, not because they are opposing someone, not to prove a point but for the purpose of adding something to make their country better. I pray that day comes!
What advice would you give to the youth of Uganda about being fearless and following their dreams?
The world will say so many things about you- you are not old enough, not educated enough or experienced enough and that is OK. When we were young, we would look up to the elders and we are like,” Wow! when will I get there?”. To the youth, I say, ” None of the elders were born with the experience, money, resources or opportunities they have.”
Many youth say that they want father and mother figures to believe in them but look to King David who said, ”Be encouraged, Oh my soul! Why are you downcast, Oh my soul?” He started encouraging himself in the word. We need to realize that the words of people have an impact on us but the most impactful words are the ones we say to ourselves.
The Bible says, “As a man thinks, so he is.” Our thoughts become our words and they become us through our actions. To the youth, I say, “It doesn’t matter what anyone says about you as long as what you think about yourself is positive. Decide! Choose today to stay positive about yourself. I can make it. I can learn it. I may not have the experience but it takes twenty one days to learn a habit and change my mindset. “
This is a fatherless generation and even the present fathers have decided not to encourage us in the Lord. In the political arena, it is not political to mention spiritual things because most of our governments have decided to separate church and state but if our generation can rise up and change this narrative, then all this is worth it.
I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance Never settle for the path of least resistance Livin’ might mean takin’ chances, but they’re worth takin’ Lovin’ might be a mistake, but it’s worth makin’ Don’t let some Hellbent heart leave you bitter When you come close to sellin’ out, reconsider Give the heavens above more than just a passing glance And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance I hope you dance (Time is a wheel in constant motion always rolling us along) I hope you danceI hope You dance~ LeAnn Rimes
Is there anything you would like to add and tell the people of Uganda?
To the people of Uganda, I thank you for embracing change, for waking up and realizing we need change and we need it now. I am the embodiment of the change Uganda needs at this time. At Mission 56, the group I belong to, our mission is “Leaving No-one Behind”. People may wonder what this is? Uganda has 56 tribes and we decided as Mission 56,we shall not leave anybody behind. There’s unity in diversity. We are going to harness the beauty, talents, experiences and giftings of all the fifty six tribes for social, economic and political development of our country. Our Manifesto highlights more of this.
I ask Uganda to join us and walk together in peace, not war or defiance or insults because the greatest weapon of our time now is PEACE because the world doesn’t know how to deal with people who fight with peace. We shall do so with our ideas. We shall fight with kindness. We shall fight with love and we shall fight with inclusiveness. And we shall do so bloodless.
Ugandans, please join us. I am not asking you to vote for me because I am different. I am asking you to vote for me because I am the change Uganda needs. Thank you!
There you have it folks. Fearless influence right before our eyes and the tale of a Presidential Aspirant BECOMING!
#This is Me