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Lira passes out hundreds of student patriots

By Hudson Apunyo

Added 4th May 2017 01:23 PM

“Now we are patriots, we are converts, we are change agents."

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“Now we are patriots, we are converts, we are change agents."

LIRA - As many as 364 students and tutors of Canon Lawrence Teacher Training College, Boroboro have been passed out after undergoing a one-week intensive training on patriotism.

This brings to about 300, 000 the number of students so far trained in patriotism since the program was introduced by President Yoweri Museveni in 2009.

The latest group was passed out at Canon Lawrence PTC Demonstration School in a colourful ceremony presided over by Lira Resident District Commissioner (RDC) Robert Abak.

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RDC Robert Abak (black suit) inspects a guard of honour mounted by the trainees while Col. Mwesigye, Mubarak Magomo and school administrators follow


Abak said patriotism is trying to shape a person to be a good citizen and that that person must liberate him- or herself from that prison where he thinks one can just live on handouts.

The RDC said security has been provided for by the NRM government and the people but the silent enemy is poverty which should be fought.

“The same system that you used to fight the insurgency should be used to fight poverty, don’t sleep," he urged.

The LCI Chairperson of Boroboro Central, Charles Ewal, said until last weekend, there was a man who had been terrorizing Boroboro hill, stealing from and raping women. “He has got lots of stories to tell on our female students which are not good,” he said.

 

Abak said the suspect was arrested by police and will appear in court. He did not disclose the name.

On his part, Col Patrick Mwesigye Commissioner National Secretariat for Patriotism Corps said it's risky for any nation to ignore issues of national consciousness.

“Even in the mighty America when President Trump took over on the first day, the first Act he signed was the Patriotism Act," he said, adding that it is an illustration that no nation can survive without patriotism.

“Who are we not to put patriotism on top of issues?”

Mwesigye urged the trainees to remain vigilant with zeal and enthusiasm  and continue where they will be and while still in the college.

He said there is evidence that patriots are the most active in schools where the ideology is conducted.

 

Mubarak Magomo, the assistant commissioner in charge of monitoring and evaluation, said the 364 students and some tutors passed out went through many topics, ranging from introduction to patriotism and leadership skills, vision 2014 and issues of the environment.

“After the training, we have confidence that the students will implement what is expected of them as per the ideology of patriotism.”

The Bishop of Lango Diocese John Charles Odurkami, who is the chairman board of governors of the college, said Uganda lacks people who love and are willing to serve their country devotedly with all their energy and strength.

“This training is very beneficial and I pray that if all Ugandans can get it, I think it can make a very big difference."

The bishop said he lived in Tanzania and everybody is security-conscious. “They are concerned about their land, country and property, and you cannot do something [wrong] and walk away with it."

The prelate, who retires this August after serving for more than 15 years, said: “For us in Uganda anybody can come, live and do his own things without anybody bothering about it even if he is a dangerous person.”

Bishop Odurkami (pictured below) said he wished to see all members of the board of governors to be trained in the next session.

 

The college was founded in 1926 and now has 348 students and 18 tutors.

The principal of the college Noel Aisu said: “Our dream is to make Canon Lawrence PTC a model PTC for patriotism activities."

He said they wish to reach out to other sister schools and communities to share and sensitise the masses on patriotism as a tool for transformation and change its misconception. He requested the government to give the college a bus to facilitate the program.

“Now we are patriots, we are converts, we are change agents."

On their part, the students expressed gratitude for the training and commended President Museveni for introducing the program in Uganda and initiating it in institutions of learning.

In a memorandum read by their representative, the students said the course has enlightened them on democratic leadership which will enable them to further improve and address the leadership gap that could have existed in guild leadership and administration.

“The drills have been so exciting. with dynamic and lovely instructors.

"We have gained physical fitness, discipline of the mine and we shall continue with the discipline even after this training,” read the students' missive.

“Through patriotism, we have also learnt more about our roles as youth and future leaders to defend and protect our nation through peaceful means.”

The students requested that the school benefit from OWC through seedlings, orchard and poultry. They also requested for modern irrigation facilities to address the challenge of drought.

They also requested the administration of the college to take them on exchange visits to share patriotic ideas.

 

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