If you keep around the Banda based campus, you can never spend thirty minutes without hearing a student uttering Ochieng Ochieng.
If you think it is some kind of dessert, then you are wrong. He is actually the man himself, the guild president of Kyambogo University. Our very own, Zam Quitah linked up with him early this week at his Kyambogo office and he revealed how he juggles academics with his political careers.
Qn: Can you tell us about yourself?
Ochieng: My name is Ochieng Ochieng; some people call me Joseph Ochieng. Popularly known as the common man. I am the guild president of the mighty institution, Kyambogo University. I am in year three, persuing a Bachelors degree in Arts with Education.
Qn: How has life at campus been to you?
Ochieng: Hmmmh!!! Life at campus has been good, although a bit challenging especially the political bit of it, where I had to pass through a series of campaign trails. But generally all is good.
Qn: What inspired you to join politics?
Ochieng: It was actually born a leader and I believe that this university and my country need me. I am for change and I aim at bringing change. I am set for the next level.
Qn: Does that mean you have plans of joining parliament?
Ochieng: That is very true. By 2021 I plan on being one of the national leaders.
Qn: How does it feel being a guild president?
Ochieng: When you are a guild president, you either make a legacy or make money. The choice is yours. I personally chose to serve my university and I am really enjoying it. Actually when you are campaigning, you are not aware of what is in there but when you sit in the office that is when reality checks in.
Qn: So how do you juggle books with politics?
Ochieng: Most importantly, I get close to my lecturers. Lucky enough there are both day and evening programmes. If I fail to go for a lecture in the morning, I can easily cover it up in the evening. However, being a guild requires a very sharp brain. You must be a sharp shooter to fully balance the two.
Qn: Can you tell about your love life?
Ochieng: Smiles…..I have not yet found her. I am not searching either. I am just there. I feel she might come in the way between me and my political career. So I am still putting it on hold.
Qn: The students in Kyambogo feel cheated; I mean they are not served to their expectations by the
University administration, what is your view on that?
Ochieng: I want the students to know one thing; there are several cases of mismanagement but we are coming over it. The university is ready to pick up from where it stumbled and soon things will be okay. Students should stay straight, focused and united
Qn: Could you tell us about your normal day?
Ochieng: I start my day at 5:00am. The first thing I do is to get online and respond to messages. Most of them are issues from students. I am always in office by noon, and I attend lectures in the evening.
Qn: What do you say about the perception that Kyambogo University is a collection of villagers?
Ochieng: No no no!!!!!!…..actually those people out there admire us. Even when they go around with cheap talk, I’m sure they are aware of the fact that our campus is a home for the genius. If you did not know, it produces the best graduates. And it has the most brilliant guild president.
Qn: who are your role models?
Ochieng: (Pauses a bit) they are actually many. First is my mother, because she has mentored me and she is followed by my elder sister Caroline, who has also been a great milestone to my life. Martin Luther and Dr. Milton Obote are on my list too.
Qn: What kind of music do you listen to?
Ochieng: I am into gospel music, basically when it comes to secular music I prefer more professional and organized music. RnB can fit into that. I also do a lot of ‘KadongoKamu’. There are several lessons to draw from it.
Qn: What do people find interesting about you?
Ochieng: I appear to be so serious at first sight but when someone gets closer, they realize I have got a strong sense of humor. I love cracking jokes and making people around me happy.
Qn: Any hobbies?
Ochieng: I love music, especially playing the piano and I also like reading political journals.
Qn: What has been your best achievement as a guild president?
Ochieng: (With tons of vigor)…I organized a security meeting where I called all hostel and rental owners to discuss security issues. My students should be sure of maximum security as they report for the next semester. It had actually never happened.
Qn: Besides being a student and guild president, is there anything else you do?
Ochieng: I work as a treasurer for the school management committee for Namugongo mixed primary school, and I am also the public Relations officer for the Youths in Namugongo.
Qn: Do you have any message for the campusers?
Ochieng: Guys that demean our university should learn to respect it and to my fellow Kyambogo students; be Proud of your status, be ready to be a Kyambogo University student, go out there and inspire people. All in all trust your God and work hard.