Dr.James Magara had many opportunities to permanently relocate his life to Europe but instead returned to Kampala. In looking back on his life, he said, “there are greater opportunities in Uganda than Europe”. Africa #000217
Opportunities In Uganda
By Dr. James Magara
My name is Dr James Magara, I’m a dentist in private business, here in Kampala Uganda and I’ve been a dentist since 1988. But started private practice in 94, before I started practice, in the year of 1992 I was teaching at the university and left from master’s degree at the University of Bristol in UK.
At the time our country, Uganda was going through a lot of economic difficulties. It was just a post war period, post-civil war. We’re just getting the bare necessities of life. Life was hard and when I went to UK, I really struggled with whether I should come back or not. I traveled there with my family. And there were opportunities from the University for me to stay and do a PhD and invitations to stay and work in UK or to go to other places very Economical exile that what we call it. But that year was the defining year for me.
I very vividly remember one morning reading through the Book of Ruth in the Bible. The story of Ruth is a story of this man and his wife Naomi who left Jerusalem in times of economic difficulty and they went to live in Moab. And the result of that time Naomi lost her husband, and her two sons, she only goes back with her daughter-in-law and I Felt the Lord speaking to me saying look Uganda has been tough. But it were you supposed to be and that is your geographical location. I can bless you anywhere. So I had a very difficult struggle that year but at the end of training I decided to go back. I decided to follow that inner leading though everything against me was saying no.
Remind you at that time, I was not thinking of private business I was just trusting that somehow God will help us. As the family we get back to Uganda and within a few weeks. I was invited to set up the practice and it’s been a slow grueling growth. Now looking back I know I made the right decision and I also realized that there are a lot of opportunities here. In the Western world there are people in the past who laid the foundations for the Western world is today. So when one moves there you are joining and benefiting from what others have done.
I travel quite a bit and I always find it intriguing to find how many people from the West are coming here. They talk of lots of opportunities available in Uganda. Uganda has a lot of it, if you go to the Entebbe airport you’ll find whenever you travel back, they are more foreigners coming in and leave than the Ugandans. They see things we don’t see. I have also heard of many who have come here without much and they have made it. They’ve really become wealthy. So we need to look at the opportunities we have.
The opportunities are for those who are willing to do the hard work it will not come easy. I have a successful practice now, which is grown, but it was difficult it involved faith, it involved hard work, and it involved believing even when times were difficult, and many people around my age group have seen the same happen with them. We have friends who are abroad and there are many but they look and realize that, when they come back later, it’s a bit more difficult for them to settle in. I’ve had friends who’ve come in and had to leave the country because the settling process was difficult. Whereas those who have stayed in for the long haul and put their hands to work and got into the trenches the opportunities find you with time.
So I think Africa has a lot of opportunity and I do agree they’re places where there’s conflict, but there are many places where those who are willing to work hard can actually make more than a living if I can put it that way.
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