Jothan Yamureebire Burobuto was born in Bushenyi district. He went to St. Peter’s Primary School, Nsambya where he scored aggregate 6.
He holds precious memories of his childhood especially his nursery days at Kawuba Church School.
“In Top class, whenever you would want to ease yourself, you would have to go through Middle and Baby before accessing the door,” Burobuto reminisced amidst heavy nostalgia.
From primary, he went to Ntare School in Mbarara where he served as Junior House Captain of Aggrey House and scored aggregate 12 in 8 at UCE.
At Uganda Martyrs Namugongo, he offered History, Economics, Literature and Divinity even when his parents wanted him to offer sciences.
At Makerere University, he was Law School GRC in first year, Makerere Law Society (MLS) President, Guild Speaker, Ag. Guild President and Guild Prime Minister.
Over the weekend, he met with our writer Steven Nuwagira and had a deep discussion about his life, Makerere guild and his next step in the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA).
You became Law School GRC in first year. Not just that, you also had the most votes in the race. How did you pull it off considering it had never happened before?
After my first semester in the day class, I joined the evening class because I had mobilized enough in the former. It was automatic that to win from first year, we had to front one candidate, unfortunately, three of us were interested, including Ewalu, who later became Lumumba hall GRC.
We held primaries and I beat them all and rooted my campaign on first and fourth year. It was a sort of first-born-last-born affair and it worked for me. I became the first ever GRC of Law School from first year.
Since then, you’ve had a bright career in university politics. Is there any office you would love to work in again, given a chance?
When I ran for Makerere Law Society (MLS) President, the Law School, having appreciated my work as GRC, voted me again. I am proud of what my cabinet and I managed to achieve but we could have done better.
In a bid to undermine my tenure because it was evident that I was headed for guild presidency after that, some members of my executive were used by external political actors in the university under that presumption of extinguishing my candidature and hoped to suppress me from within.
So if there is any office I would love to work in again, it is MLS presidency.
In a summary, from the time you became guild speaker: what have been some of the achievements you’ve realized?
When I assumed speakership, the document I found in place as the guild constitution had so many faults and litigation never ended. We, as the 81st guild house, therefore embarked on addressing that challenge and I can gladly say that right now, much as it isn’t perfect – it is better than it was.
The other milestones include being able to have the draconian 60% fees policy scrapped and replaced with a much better one (with the help of the 82nd GRC elects), seeking audience with President Museveni on August 16,2016 to give him a feel of the students’ challenges from a learning perspective and the just recently initiated Makerere Guild Forums.
There has been talk of gross financial mismanagement in the students’ guild and yet you resigned unexpectedly: Is that the reason why you resigned?
You see, politics is a game. The best trick is to always hold onto your tactics yourself. The best part of my resignation was that only I knew about it and that is how I was able to pull it off.
Like I said, I don’t think it is proper to discuss guild financial matters in the public domain but I am more than certain that in the near future, we shall get to know everything.
What informed your decision to run for MP in East African Legislative Assembly (EALA)?
Just like lavae has to get into the pupa stage, having had a successful student leadership career and wanting to serve in a newer sphere is what informed my decision.
You see, the East African Community concept isn’t a now concept. It is a then (future) concept. You cannot equip the now people to deal with the then issues.
Economic integration is good but it isn’t sustainable once there is no social integration. If the East African people don’t appreciate that we are one, the integration would have to break.
My candidature is about bringing the concept to our young people. These would be able to develop the then concept.
I am told you’re a personal friend of the former Uganda Premier Rt. Hon. Amama Mbabazi and that he is the man holding your financial muscle: how true is that allegation, considering you are a student without a stipulated source of income?
If you use the benchmarks that those people used to say I am a personal friend of Mr. Mbabazi, then you would realise I am also friends with President M7, the Minister of Education and even the IGP because I appreciate what each of them has done for our nation.
I just hope that the honourable (electorate) appreciate my marketing manager message because they will have done unlimited sensitization for the assembly among the young people with that simple gesture.
You could contest and lose. As a politician, what is your fall back position?
My hope is that I can excite the nation to the tune of realising that we need to let young people take charge of their destiny.
So for me, it is a win-win situation in whatever way it comes.
The fall back position is therefore to continue and develop the aggressive debate on the matter and spread the message about that one message of letting us take charge of our destiny.
In case you win, wont that jeopardize your education?
With God’s grace, I will complete my studies this year. So when I assume office in June, I will still work as I try to complete my studies.
People need to understand that EAC is not just about Arusha. I wont be tied up on the other end of the world.
So, what is your final message to all youth out there?
My appeal to fellow youth is to realise that this is not just my race. It is not just about me. It is symbolic of the message I bring forth – taking charge of our destiny.
The least we can do for our generation and the generations to come is engaging in this debate to have us managing our affairs and to do that we need to own this candidature.