By Peter Magomu Mashate
I mourn His Excellency Ambassador Hassan Waswa Galiwango a great Pan Africanist
He has been my brother, my Mukwasi (Muko) my neighbour, my fellow Cadre and above all a fellow Great Pan-Africanist.
I knew Hassan Galiwango as a neighbour of Peter Oyugi in Doko in the 70s and a relative of my immediate neighbour as a son to his (Senga) Mayi/Saudah married to Late Ismail Bisaso in Namunsi, Nsereko Zone’ Nakaloke where my home is .
With the Bisasos’ we grew up as relatives not neighbours anymore.
When I proceeded to the United Kingdom for my legal professional studies and subsequently called to the Bar by the Honourable Society of Lincolns Inn of Court London as a Barrister-a-Law, I decided to pay back to my Ugandan community and in particular to the communities of Masaabaland in many different ways.
I did this in addition to other projects by sponsoring several youth (people) to the United Kingdom at personal expense regardless of tribe. Am happy as His Excellency Ambassador Dr Galiwango (RIP) was all those I sponsored are successful and also helping other people back home in Uganda. At one time he walked into the NRM Diaspora League office at the Secretariat and after a chat asked me about what he called my sacrifices to all these people I sponsored to UK (at personal expense) and I replied; Dr it’s not sacrifice but a duty to our people and he responded “am humbled barrister Mashate”. Such was the humility, respectfulness and thoughtfulness of HE Ambassador Galiwango.
When his father died in Doko I sent two bags of cement through Hon Iman Magala but he raised me and said thank you yet he had all the money of comfort but he was always down to earth and I was humbled.
While the majority of the sponsored were mainly from Buyobo (My Paternal birth place) and Buwalasi (My maternal birth place-ibwiwana) in Budadiri West, I also extended my hand to Budadiri East (Bubolo, Buwadeya, Bumirisa and beyond).
I also extended my hand of help to Mubuya and Wanale lineages in my sponsorship. I also extended my sponsorship hand to Atesot because they were hosts to my father Erieza Mashate (RIP) who settled in Kachumbala and my uncle Charles Bethuel Wagooli (RIP) former Under Secretary ministry of Defence under Obite 11 and NRM but had settled in Alogoi in Teso.
But above all I did not forget my immidiate neighbour and I also sponsored Hassan Galiwango’s aunt/senga Saudah’s daughter Lukia Nagadya to London and she is happily settled in New castle upon Type in the United Kingdom.
Way back on her arrival in the UK and while in office she asked me to call Dr Galiwango who then Special District Administrator (SDA) Mbale. At the other end of the line was Dr Galiwango and he said to me that “Muganda wange kyotukolede tekyikolwa mutitizi Allah akudizewo kyosinga okwagala”.
I told him that “thank you” but I also told him that the best insurance for one’s welfare and that of general society is helping and ensuring that your neighbour is well and slept without hunger. Because if he sleeps with hunger sleep won’t come and you won’t sleep either even when you are satisfied (okuse).
Dr Galiwango responded by telling me that my few words were very philosophical and an inspiration. Am not surprised that Dr Galiwango has died with a very big and most generous heart larger than life indeed. Am certain that the Almighty will judge him approximately and grant him his rightful place in heaven (Janahh).
In 2004 he was the RDC Masindi when he resigned to contest in the bi-election in Mbale Municipality Parliamentary seat following the death of Rt Hon James Wapakabulo.
I also flew in from United Kingdom and joined him. Politics of segregation was advanced on the basis that Mbale town was a Siting room (Lidilo) of Bamasaaba and had to be represented by a Mumasaaba.
Dr Galiwango competently deflected this narrative by arguing that he was the biggest Unifying person in Masaabaland because he had married from north Bugisu (Budadiri) and also South Bugisu (Bubuya) and what was more unifying than that?
Indeed, as the Director Mobilisation of the NRM as the Secretariat I closely worked with him as the General Secretary NRM Diaspora League where we had a Diaspora office.
I also worked very closely with him in 2016 general election as the NRM FLAG BEARER FOR BUNGOKHO NORTH PARLIAMENTARY SEAT 2016-2021.
He was a generous man and one of the most generous ambassadors of Masaabaland.
May the Almighty Rest his Soul in Eternal Peace.
PETER MAGOMU MASHATE.