I went down on bended knee to ask for her hand in marriage while at a dinner at Sheraton Kampala Hotel after returning from a tour in the UK.
Local artiste Hillary Kiyaga aka dr Hilderman is aspiring for Mawokota north mp seat. he walked cissy Namuddu down the aisle at Rubaga Cathedral, Kampala in November 2011. they shared there love story with Umaru Kashaka
HOW DID YOU MEET NAMUDDU?
We met at Makerere University in 2003. But we married on November 25, 2011, at Rubaga Cathedral in Kampala. We are blessed with four children, a girl, and three boys. The girl, Hilton Nanyingi, 11, is the eldest. The boys are Carlton Ndabirawala, 9, Blessington Mutalemwa, 6 and Bobi Christon Wokota, who is one year and three months.
WHY DID YOU NAME ONE OF YOUR CHILDREN BOBI?
Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine and his wife, Barbie, are our good family friends. He signed on our marriage certificate as a witness, though Mesach Semakula (a fellow artiste) was the best man. Christon was born weeks after Bobi had been released from prison. It was a painful moment for the family.
HOW DID YOU FEEL ON YOUR WEDDING DAY?
I was so emotional on that day. I had just lost my father, Maurice Nsubuga, 10 months back. When I saw my mother, Margaret Nakanwagi, seated alone in the church, it brought back memories and I shed tears.
WHAT DOES YOUR WIFE DO FOR A LIVING?
She works with the Buganda Land Board as head of corporate business.
HOW DID YOU MEET?
We used to share a department while at university and she used to do a paper at the performing arts school, where I was also a student. I used to interact with her frequently until we eventually became an item.
HOW DID YOU PROPOSE TO HER?
I went down on bended knee to ask for her hand in marriage while at a dinner at Sheraton Kampala Hotel after returning from a tour in the UK. This was after a long period of dating. That is when we began arranging for the introduction. It was in 2008 when I learnt that she was pregnant. We were expecting a baby girl.
HOW DID YOU WIN HER HEART?
I won her heart by maintaining my stand that I loved her. Since we had been friends before, I was so serious in terms of relationship, so she trusted me.
WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO HER?
Cissy is a simple and focused woman. Her approach to life differentiated her from many girls. I was a year ahead of her, but she advised me as if she was my elder.
HOW DID YOU DATE HER?
Cissy comes from a religious family, so our dating was mainly accompanying her to Kampala Pentecostal Church, now Watoto. I also enjoyed her company. We never missed the Christmas Cantata at Watoto, with all the church events. The church was always our hangout point.
HOW DO YOU HANDLE DISAGREEMENTS?
I met my wife as an adult. She has a great sense of humour, which speaks volumes, especially when I am in the wrong. So the respect we have for each other has kept us moving. Even when we have disagreements, my respect for her determines the way I respond to her. I also learnt that women are handled delicately.
SOME MUSICIANS DO NOT WANT TO MARRY; WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO MAKE SUCH A COMMITMENT?
The Catholic foundation from home instilled this in me. I grew up knowing that people must stay with people they are married to. Marriage is not just for the good of individuals, or the couple, but for the community as a whole. The permanent and exclusive union between husband and wife mirrors the mutual commitment between God and his people.
WHAT FIRES UP YOUR MARRIAGE?
The beautiful children spice up everything in our marriage. The children remind me that it is no longer between me and my wife, but a family thing.
DOESN’T YOUR CELEBRITY STATUS INTERFERE WITH YOUR LOVE LIFE?
Of course, when I have many occupational related-hazards, she is directly and indirectly affected. She has a family, so some acts, such as videos where I am dancing with women, affect her.
DO YOU CALL EACH OTHER BY NAME?
We rarely call ourselves by name. “Honey” is our house name.
DO YOU BELIEVE IN FAMILY?
Family planning is the way to go in this economically hard world.
WHAT KIND OF MAN ARE YOU AT HOME?
I traditionally govern my home. As a Muganda, English is vernacular. When the children are at home and being a Catholic, we pray and follow the catechism principles as a family. There is no celebrity in my house.
HAVE YOU DONE A SONG FROM YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH CISSY?
Abita Ebikute is a song inspired by family blessings. I wrote it after counting down God’s blessings to our family. This song sends a message of optimism about the Lord not forgetting his own.
WHEN DID LOVE FIRST MAKE MEANING TO YOU?
It made meaning when we had our daughter, Hilton.
WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE TO YOUNG PEOPLE?
Young people must take there time. There is no need to rush marriage. One needs to set priorities for a soulmate. If one scores high, keep them. No one is perfect, so if you want to marry, be ready to tolerate a fellow elder. Do not marry because people must marry. This institution rejects bandwagon effects.
Cissy Namuddu speaks about Hilderman
HOW DID YOU MEET HILDERMAN?
I met Hilderman in 2003 as a fresher at Makerere University, where I was studying social anthropology and performing arts. He would greet me every day. We have made eight years in marriage.
HOW DID YOU FEEL ON YOUR WEDDING DAY?
On my wedding day, it confirmed to me that he truly loved me. A young man of celebrity status to make such a commitment does not come easy. He kept his word. Many stops at introductions. I felt an achiever as well. Getting married to my first love before making 30 years were some of the things we used to talk about as young girls.
WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO HIM?
He was humble, spoke sense and respected me. I asked him to go to church with me and he did. Imagine accompanying me to an overnight.
HOW LONG DID YOU DATE?
From 2003 to date, we still go out on dates. Sheraton Kampala Hotel is our special place. During my graduation party in 2007, he sat next to my good friend, Jonathan Mugenyi, who is now working with the National Curriculum Development Centre and he told me that as I gave my speech, Hilderman held his hand tightly and said: “I want to marry Cissy.” And surely, he proposed to me later that year in 2007...
HILDERMAN SEEMS TO BE A BUSY MAN; DOESN’T THIS AFFECT YOUR LIFE?
God cannot give you what you will not handle. Despite our busy schedules, we find time for each other. I do not feel affected because we have great communication. This has come with time though, I incorporate some maturity. Christmas and New Years are one of the busy days for musicians, but ever since 2008, we have celebrated the season together. Despite his busy schedule, he is a family man, so he strikes the balance.
HOW DO YOU HANDLE ARGUMENTS?
We are guided by God. God’s values and ways are the best. Truth is, our disagreements are not many.
DO YOU FEEL JEALOUS WHEN HILDERMAN SMILES AT OTHER WOMEN?
Haha, not really. I am confident that our roots are so deep. I am his choice. I am also an alumni of the African Women’s Leadership Institute that taught us principles of self-confidence, respect, and appreciation of the women.
The women have no problem, the man should be able to see these beautiful smiles and control himself. How would it appear if he met women and became gloomy? Besides, they are his fans. I only get uncomfortable with some videos when our children ask questions because they have not learnt to differentiate daddy from Dr. Hilderman at work.
ARE YOU HIS ‘DESIGNER’?
He has a high sense of fashion. When I iron and hang his clothes, he makes the choice. However, If he wears an outfit for a long time, I put it away or give it out.
HOW HAVE YOU MANAGED TO KEEP YOUR MARRIAGE STRONG?
I pray alot and the children are also a strong bond. We are also each other’s shoulder in good and bad times.
HOW HAVE YOU CONTRIBUTED TO HIS MUSIC CAREER?
I have been sacrificial and understanding. Music needs alot of promotion; it is an expensive venture. Even if the money is his, it takes a supporting wife to approve of such expenditure. My lifestyle and the way I have loved him is an inspiration. He always professes God in his songs somewhere.
DO YOU BELIEVE IN FAMILY PLANNING?
Of course. We do plan for our children.
HOW MANY CHILDREN DO YOU INTEND TO HAVE?
I am done with the children's chapter. Four are enough for me, but I am open to adopting, especially if God’s provision is sufficient. We already have many we are helping.
WHAT THINGS DOES HILDERMAN DO TO MAKE YOU FEEL LOVED?
Hilderman gives me whatever I ask for that he can offer. He provides for and whatever. He respects family and supports me. He paid my tuition for my master's degree. He is a good person.
I felt Hilary’s support the more when he asked me to resign from the bank because he felt it was stressful working, studying and having a baby. He took care of me 100% tirelessly. My decision to go back to work was not that he was weary, but because I wanted to put my education to use. I like being impactful.
That is us. The good things outweigh the bad ones. We both forgive each other. If you have a partner that is unforgiving and keeps grudges, than it cannot work out.
HOW IS IT LIKE BEING MARRIED TO A MUSICIAN?
Haha, marrying a musician! If you notice, I even rarely refer to him as Hilderman. He is a normal person. There is no celebrity at home. It is just people who look at you with a keen eye and wonder how we live.
For example, because of the nature of my jobs, people think I have alot of money, yet the reality is, Hilderman knows what I earn and that he has enough to support me. We feel normal and prefer not to involve the public in matters that concern us.
WHAT TYPE OF MAN IS HILDERMAN AT HOME?
Hilderman is extremely responsible and caring. I sometimes feel guilty that he is a better parent because he even wakes up in the night to check on his children and cover them and ensure they are in time for school. He is always the one who attends school activities.
HOW DO YOU FEEL NOW THAT HILDERMAN IS ASPIRING FOR MP SEAT IN MAWOKOTA NORTH?
His passion for Mawokota is extreme. He even had to name our son, Bobi Christon, Wokota! I realised he loves people and Mawokota County. I feel he is driven with a heartfelt purpose, which is an important aspect.
However, I honestly have mixed feelings thinking about mama Amelia (incumbent MP) and him competing for the same post. I pray about it, too.
WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE TO COUPLES OUT THERE?
A family that prays together stays together. Being there for each other in good and bad times is key.