When Barack Obama was elected and sworn in as 44th President of the United States of America on January 20, 2009, many black people, all over the world, celebrated.I was one of the people who was greatly inspired by Obama. At the time, I was preparing to join university. I continued to follow the Obama policies, especially in Africa. However, it was until last year 2019, 10 years after his election that I benefited directly from one of his programmes - The Mandela Washington Fellowship. In Uganda, I am grateful to be among the 150 fellows who have benefited since 2014.
As one of the activities to mark Nelson Mandela International Day on July 18, we have compiled a small book of all alumni of the Mandela Washington Fellowship in Uganda, since 2014. We hope that it will re-energize young people in Uganda, specially those who want to apply in coming years. Although Donald Trump wanted to scrap off the programme, run under U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Senate prevailed and has instead channeled more funding towards the fellowship. The 2020 fellowship was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.