Monday, June 30, 2008

NewVision Awards Dr. Martin Ssempa

Harriette Onyalla

Pastor Martin Ssempa, Jesse Okot , Francis Kigobe, Maria Baryamujura, Abdu Lutaaya, Musa Wakibi's son and Mwalimu Musheshe show off their certificates

SELF doubt. You cannot help following your heart anymore. You can no longer stand by and watch things continue the way they are. You cannot deny the fact that you do not exactly fall in the 'rich' bracket.You decide to start a project to change your community and many times you want to give up but your heart will not let you. And then someone comes along and says your efforts are, indeed, great. You are making a difference in your community. That was the mood in The New Vision conference room recently. Here were 10 Ugandans whom other Ugandans thought were making a difference in their communities in different ways. Francis Kigobe chose to build a library. Catherine Mwesigwa, The New Vision's Features Editor put it aptly: "Kigobe chose to donate to other young people an opportunity he did not have when he was young."


Pastor Martin Ssempa of Makerere preaches sexual restraint and abstinence to young people. He says sex is a beautiful thing if it is done at the right time in the right place, that place is called marriage. "If you want a child to take their medicine without a fight, make it look beautiful that is why most syrups are pink, add there some sugar to make it sweet. That is why I am now a 'cool' guy. Young people now know abstaining from sex can be fun," he says.

Ssempa emerged second runner-up, taking home sh500,000. While parents and the youths at Makerere University, who flock Pastor Ssempa's Prime Time evenings every Saturday appreciate his message, some people, especially the donor community, think he should preach condoms as well. Not bad, one would say, but how do you preach condoms and abstinence using the same platform?

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