President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni on Monday met Uganda’s Ambassador to Somalia, H.E Prof. Sam Tulya-Muhika at State House, Entebbe.
During the meeting, President Museveni offered valuable insights to Somalia, a recent addition to the East African Community (EAC), urging them to draw inspiration from the National Resistance Movement (NRM)’s successful ideology for its citizens’ prosperity and strategic security.
He said Somalia could learn crucial leadership lessons from the NRM, which successfully united a failed and divided state.
“I think Somalia should form a students’ movement like the one we started in the 1960s. We as students saw the need for integration intellectually at that time without any influence from the business groups whatsoever,” he said.
The President emphasized the importance of intellectual perception, citing historical figures like Julius Nyerere and Tom Mboya, who championed the East African Federation without succumbing to external pressures.
Reflecting on his experience in training Somali soldiers at Lake Albert, President Museveni highlighted the need for motivated individuals driven by intellectual identity rather than financial gains.
“When we were training Somali soldiers at Lake Albert, I inquired and was told that some students had come back from London to join, so you get those types of people who are now motivated by the identity of Somalia intellectually not because they are making money and let them be part of the movement that is ideologically driven.”
Furthermore, President Museveni emphasized the role of empowered Somali youth in defending their country both militarily and ideologically.
He also underlined the importance of patriotism and Pan-Africanism as driving forces for national unity and development.
Ambassador Muhika expressed gratitude towards President Museveni for the guidance and affirmed that Somalia is already contemplating establishing a students’ movement.
Highlighting the potential contribution of Somalis who have studied in Uganda, Ambassador Muhika expressed optimism about their involvement in the initiative.
“There is a good number of ex-students in Somalia who have studied from Uganda; in Islamic university, Makerere University and others. We can therefore consider using them for this good cause,” he said.
The discussion between the two parties also encompassed diplomatic and political consultations, defence and trade cooperation; signalling a collaborative effort to foster growth and stability in both countries.
It should be noted that Somalia was last year admitted to the East African Community, making it the eighth member of the bloc.