Viewpoints with Brenda is a podcast hosted by Brenda Ntambirweki, a Ugandan lawyer. Brenda regularly hosts conversations with African professionals, entrepreneurs, innovators, influencers and change-makers on various topics of interest. Follow the podcast on Instagram and Twitter: @viewpointsbybn
Nicholas Opiyo on Renewing Commitment to the Rule of Law
Our final episode of our second season features Nicholas Opiyo, the Founder and Executive Director and Lead Attorney at Chapter Four Uganda, a civil rights organization providing pro bono legal representation for marginalized and underserved communities in Uganda. Since 2005, Nicholas has been at the forefront of championing civil rights and political freedoms for underserved communities in Uganda. For his work, Nicholas has received several awards including the German Africa Prize in 2017, Voices for Justice Award from Human Rights Watch in 2015, the European Union Parliament Sakharov Fellows Prize in 2016, the Alison Des Forges award for extraordinary activism in 2015 and the Tulip Human Rights Prize by the Dutch Government in 2021.
Currently, Nicholas is a Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School's Carr Centre for Human Rights Policy. Previously, he was a Visting Scholar at The Centre for African Studies, Stanford University in Palo Alto, California and a Visiting Scholar at The Global Health Program, University of California San Francisco. Nicholas is also an amateur photographer and an ardent soccer fan, supporting SC Villa in Uganda and Manchester United in the United Kingdom.
Nicholas speaks about the most pressing human rights concerns in Uganda at present, how social media is shaping the discourse around human rights all over the world and renewing commitment to the rule of law in Uganda. Nicholas also speaks about how participants in civil society could reclaim public conversation in connection with the protection of civil liberties. Nicholas also shares his love for SC Villa, a leading football club in Uganda.
*Note: This episode was recorded prior to Chapter Four resuming its operations in June 2022, after a successful challenge before the High Court of Uganda.
Dr. Nataliey Bitature on Leadership, Gender Bias and Empowerment
Dr. Nataliey Bitature is the Chief of Staff at the Simba Group, an East African group of companies spanning hospitality, energy, telecom, real estate and a foundation, where she oversees operations, impact and partnerships across these sectors within Uganda. She is also the founder of Musana Carts, a social enterprise building solar-powered street food vending carts and HER, an online mentorship platform with over 3000 young African women. Nataliey has been recognised as a business leader and innovator by Forbes 30 Under 30, the World Bank, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and World Economic Forum. She serves as a director on several boards including the boards of Uganda Property Holdings Ltd, the Makerere Innovation and Incubation Centre, Start-up Hub, Capital Solutions Social Innovation Fund, Save the Children Africa's advisory board and the Quinn Abenakyo Foundation.
Nataliey speaks about her experience overcoming gender bias and her experience in leadership as a C-suite executive in a predominantly male arena. She also speaks about the role critical thinking has played in her leadership style and her proudest moments at the Simba Group.
Michael Niyitegeka on Bridging the Tech Skills Gap in Uganda
Michael Niyitegeka is the Program Director, Refactory at Clarke International University in Uganda and the ICDL Africa Country Manager for Uganda. He has over 20 years' experience in the ICT sector and has worked with several government, private, regional and international institutions. Michael is passionate and devoted to human capital development for the ICT sector in Uganda. Under Refactory, his flagship project, he has trained over 250 junior developers with an 80% placement rate in the ecosystem in the last three years. He is also a Franklin Covey Certified Facilitator and a proud Rotarian.
In this episode, Michael speaks about what can be done to bridge the tech skills gap in Uganda and the continent at large, including suggestions on how to reform curricula and what more can be done on the continent to grow and retain tech talent. Michael also speaks about his passion for Rotary International.
Muthoni Waigwa on African Creatives and African Content Production
Muthoni Waigwa is a Kenyan creative entrepreneur with over 12 years’ experience in the media and entertainment industry. She is a digital content producer and creator and the co- founder of a graphic design and audio-visual production company, Nifty Works Plus Limited, which has been in operation for over 8 years. Muthoni is also a podcast producer and the host of Moments with Nderru Podcast which was launched in March 2020.
On this episode, Muthoni speaks about creating and producing African content, barriers to consumption of African content and possible policy and other infrastructure improvements that may address the daily challenges African players in the creative space face.
Aga Sekalala Jr. on Cross-Generational Family Businesses
Aga Sekalala Jr. is a Ugandan entrepreneur, investor, business executive and innovator. Aga is the founder, former CEO and executive chairman of Radio Simba, one of Uganda’s most popular radio stations. He is also the Executive Director of Ugachick, a major poultry operation in Uganda, a former Board Chair of KCB Bank and a former Board member of the Uganda Investment Authority and the Uganda Export Promotion Board. Aga is currently the Vice Chairman of the Uganda Manufacturers Association and Chairman of the Poultry Producers of Uganda.
Aga speaks about his experience in managing one of the most successful cross-generational businesses in Uganda -- from the role stewardship, mentorship and family principles have played in the business to the importance of financial readiness. Aga also speaks about balancing family dynamics in a family business and the advantages of vertical integration to his family's poultry business. Aga also speaks about why (for now) institutional investors are preferred to venture capital or private equity as a source of funding for his family's business.
Nshuti Lucy Mbabazi on Cashless Economies as a Tool for Financial Inclusion
Nshuti Lucy Mbabazi is the Lead for Africa Advocacy & Partnerships at the United Nations Better than Cash Alliance, tasked with ensuring that digital payments reach and work for every African. Nshuti holds several advisory roles with a number of organizations such as Girl Effect, Girls in ICT Rwanda, Leo Africa Institute, BBOXX Rwanda and RICTA Rwanda. Nshuti previously worked with Rwanda Development Board, Visa Inc. and Ecobank Group.
On this episode, Nshuti breaks down the misconceptions around cashless economies and explains how cashless economies can facilitate financial inclusion. Nshuti also speaks about the policies that African stakeholders in government and the private sector can adopt to ensure innovation and inclusion in the digital payments sector.
Your content is refreshing. Keep up the good work. 💪💪
This was Long Overdue
Thank you Brenda for bringing this to us. This was a great conversation with Mark, funny, intelligent, witty. I hope these conversations will inspire lots of young people in our country, the continent and around the world. Looking forward to more episodes.