Last week, educationist Dr Lawrence Mulindwa hosted friends at his country home at Kanyike in Kammengo, Mpigi, to thank God for receiving an honorary doctorate degree from London Graduate School (Commonwealth University). in honour of his contribution towards development of education and sports, writes Joseph Kimbowa.
On December 13, former Fufa president received the award during the 15th Dubai Leadership Summit for his distinguished contributions and achievements in the education and sports sectors.
The event in Kammengo started with celebration of mass led by Father Denis Kizito and Mulindwa dedicated his achievements to his mother Catherine Mulindwa Nakyejwe. He added that success also came from belief in God (especially through the intercession of Mother Mary), his hard work, integrity and, above all, selflessness.
Mulindwa said this award had energised him to do more to help especially the vulnerable in society. This doctorate is given to people that have distinguished themselves in development of their respective communities.
Among other achievements, Mulindwa was recognised for being the first Ugandan to build a stadium and helped to establish a competitive football club (Vipers) that represented Uganda at last year’s Caf Confederations Cup.
He has also been instrumental in the education sector through his school, St Mary’s SS Kitende. Before flying out to receive the award, Mulindwa had told The Observer that such international recognition is testament to his continued passion for not only sports but for the wellbeing of humanity in general.
“I feel great that, internationally, people appreciate the works I am doing to touch people’s lives. This award is not given to everyone; it is given to distinguished personalities,” Mulindwa said.
Through his Mulindwa Foundation, the staunch Catholic has offered bursaries to thousands of orphans, the disadvantaged and disabled children over years. His foundation also takes care of old people and widows.
“I think those are the things that move people,” he said.
Currently, Mulindwa employs hundreds of people at Vipers FC including players, coaching staff, support staff and service providers. At his school, at least 300 students are studying on either academic or sport bursaries. His foundation also caters for another 300 students in other academic institutions.
“You don’t need to do a lot to make a difference. You just need to identify with the underprivileged. People should understand that God created us to serve the universe,” he said.
“We all can’t have the same means; so, I call on those that God has given more wealth to help those in need. It is all about sharing. They should do things that touch people’s lives. I may have owned a fleet of vehicles for public transport but that only helps me as an individual. So, they should do things that help the entire public.”
The stadium, now in its final phase of construction, has so far cost Mulindwa over Shs 1.5bn. Mulindwa’s secretary for nine years Agnes Kyeyune believes this award is long overdue.
“I have worked in four other schools but I never met an administrator like this one and don’t think I will meet any other. He is just unique. He is a rich man who identifies with the downtrodden, listens to everyone irrespective of class or circumstance and is always ready to offer help,” she fondly says.
“This recognition by an international university is a fulfilment of his goodness. If it were up to me, I would have honoured him a long time ago.”