Monday March 7 2011

Amos Wekesa



What kind of people do you dislike associating with?
Hypocrites, liars and of course envious chaps. I can’t stand such people.

Have you been dragged to jail before?
I have. There was a time I was coming from the garage, and was arrested by a traffic policewoman for not having Third Party insurance. She took me to Central Police Station. I was supposed to go to jail for six months or pay Shs200,000 which I paid. But what amused me that day is that there were rapists, thieves and all sorts of criminals in the cell and they were taking away money from new comers, but they never touched me because I spoke Swahili - yet I had $800 and Shs500,000 with me.

What pissed you off yesterday?
I was in a meeting with the tourism private sector people, and instead of working together as a team for the common good of the industry, I realised that some of them were pushing for selfish interests.

What is the strangest thing that you have seen or occurred to you while in a National Park?
Those are many, but one, which I will never forget, is when I slept in a bed where there was a snake in Kibale National Park.

And was that in your own lodge?
Yes, in my own lodge.

Was it a nice or hostile companion?
I have a really bad sleeping style. I turn a lot. Fortunately, that night I slept properly. I felt it go over my body and I woke up but it didn’t hurt me.
Which animal in the Park has the exact character like yours?
I think it’s the chimpanzee. they are loving because they spend 40 per cent of their time kissing and romancing but can also be aggressive, they are hardworking and they are not as a lazy as gorillas.


So do you also spend 40 per cent of your time kissing and romancing like the chimps?
I am too busy, but that is what I would be doing if I had the time they have.

What is the one gadget or new thing you have come across that got you puzzled?
I am so bright. I hardly get teased by such things. I am sure this will not amuse my enemies!

What did you find annoying or awkward about the elections?
I have been a Sematimba supporter but I was saddened because of the ballot box stuffing. In my heart I was convinced he was the candidate to change the situation in Kampala, however I am waiting for him to convince me again before March 14.

What is the one thing your wife disagrees with you often?
My openness. I tell her everything. if I walked on the street and saw a beautiful girl, I will go home and tell her, “Oh my God, I saw a pretty girl!” So, she keeps telling me to tell her only 90 per cent of what I think because I tell her everything.

Isn’t that really unhealthy for your marriage?
No, it has actually made our marriage easy. We have been married for the last eight years and she is one of the best things that has happened to me.

So does she tell you everything herself?
No, she is a reserved person. She tends to sieve through things.

What is the one thing you wouldn’t tolerate in an employee?
Intentional mishandling of a client. I wouldn’t tolerate that because client satisfaction is the secret behind our success.

How does it really feel like owning several cars, lodges in the Parks, a successful business and all that?
Two things; it creates a lot of fear of the unknown. Even as a Christian I think I could wake up one day and find myself poor. The other thing is that it brings satisfaction seeing that all these people working for me are doing well because I took a risk.

What is the one thing you dislike about your past?
So many things. I was born in abject poverty and I don’t dream of going back there. But it also gives me the opportunity of seeing God’s hand in everything I do.