Rumour has it that women are ready to vote Peter Sematimba Mayor of Kampala just on account of his looks. The popular entertainer, entrepreneur and pastor is known for superb grooming. He talked to Elizabeth Namazzi and Pidson Kareire:
Why have you joined politics late?
I donâ€™t think it is late. It is the right time for me. In fact, what Iâ€™m bringing on table is not politics, but leadership and solid management. It is the right time to make Kampala clean and make it modern like other cities. I do recognise that being a mayor is not only a blessing but also a solicitude. I will be serving people of Kampala with the help of God. This is solely to make this a great city for each and every citizen as well as visitors.
Why has leadership become your passions?
Leadership has always been a characteristic of Peter Sematimba. Iâ€™m a first born in our family. Besides, the fact that Iâ€™m a successful businessperson is a statement of leadership capacity.
Why does Peter Sematimba groom?
Well, it is an investment, a very pleasurable hobby and a pleasurable expression of myself. And by the way when I talk about grooming I am talking about more than good clothes, haircuts and perfumes. I am also talking about working out...you know, going to the gym and making your body fit and good looking. I really enjoy working out. That way you are very well groomed even when you are naked!!
When you are naked...?
Yes...when you are naked. It is amazing how beautiful the human body is when it is shaped the way God made it. Unfortunately for most people, their bodies have been abused and cannot be described as beautiful. Maintaining a good body is an act of worshipping God for his incredible creation.
How much do you spend on your grooming a month?
Iâ€™ve never sat down to calculate it and I have no desire to do so. The important thing is to buy the necessary things you need to make you look good. These include the right soaps and pimple fighters (by the way the most effective pimple fighter is Colgate tooth paste with fluoride), moisturiser, powder, deodourants, things for your nails and exercise equipment.
Are you a gym king?
I would be very unhappy to do without a gym. I wake up very early and go to the gym because I have it at home and I repeat it in the evening. That is why I look younger than all of you young people.
Did you learn all that from your mother?
I picked up a lot of stuff from both my parents. They both look after themselves so I think itâ€™s in the blood. My Dad is nuts about perfumes and looking good. At 71, he still moves around in cool dark shades. He loves good clothes. My Mom refuses to dress like a Ugandan woman of her age. It is amusing to find her dying her hair so as to maintain that youthful look. Of course I picked a lot of other things along the way but I got the basics from my parents.
Should men invest in grooming?
Of course. Why not? The world is meant to be beautiful and that includes those in it! Why shouldnâ€™t men look attractive? In fact, women and children are more attracted to well-groomed men. Even men and decision makers quietly admire and are moved by well-groomed men. One also feels better about themselves if they are well groomed.
Some men think women like it when they smell like goats!
Thatâ€™s wrong. That is some lame excuse by men that are either too lazy to take care of themselves or just havenâ€™t learned how to do so. Bambi, God help those women who live and love such men.
Have you ever landed a good deal because of the way you look or smell?
I donâ€™t think itâ€™s solely because of that but I do believe it helps immensely. Being well groomed puts you in an advantageous position. I know that I choose my clothes very carefully when I am going for meetings. I dress differently for female clients as opposed to male clients.
What is your favourite fragrance?
Did you ever dodge a bath?
Yeah, like every young boy I dodged the shower as often as I could. I came up with all sorts of tricks to look like I had showered...stuff like getting my hair wet and then smearing cold water on my chest and stomach with my palms so that in case my Mom checked, the body felt cool and moist like I had showered!
When did you first apply makeup?
I donâ€™t remember when but I was very young. I was using those things right from childhood and I really liked it. I remember I started hot-combing my hair when I was 13 especially when I was going for weddings. Goodness, I will never forget the times that it would rain at some of these weddings and see my hair literally shrink. That was so embarrassing. So if it rained, I would try all means to protect my hair.
Didnâ€™t your agemates call you a sissy?
I donâ€™t remember being ridiculed about it. May be it was because they noticed that I was getting the attention of young ladies.
How did you deal with their attention?
Gees...like any normal guy, I liked it. Are you kidding? I mean, thatâ€™s what I was looking for. I enjoyed their compliments and whatever extras that would come with them!
Are women still attracted to you for the same reason?
Let me put it this way, I do get a lot of compliments from women. But I must add that I donâ€™t know if these compliments mean that they are attracted to me. I find it safe to not make assumptions. So are they attracted to me? Do they want a piece of me? I wonder...
How long does it take you to choose what to wear?
It depends on the occasion. Sometimes it is spontaneous and quick.
There are times when I plan what Iâ€™ll wear two weeks ahead of time
Most men are fascinated by cars. Are you one of those?
I am crazy about cars. In fact, if it was not because of these campaigns, I would be in Los Angeles for the latest Auto cars show. Every January, I travel for that event.
Sematimbaâ€™s winning looks