Late Ms. Mastulla Namaganda (circled above) has been the women Councillor (Representative) for Ntenjeru Sub-county in Mukono District, passed away and buried to rest forever last week on Sunday.
I personally known Mastullah in 2013, when i was carrying out a feasibility research about introducing a skills enhancement program for single teenage mothers, orphans and jobless youths in Katosi community, a landing site on the south of Lake Victoria.
At that time, Mastullah was serving as a local council secretary but actively working as a general official for the whole local council of katosi community, meaning that she was the general person to contact for all matters of this community.
I reached her for consultation and advice on how best to implement the skills training project in the area she was leading and had served for many years. She was so welcoming to all ideas and sounded so supportive to the goals of the project.
We initially worked together in identifying the most vulnerable girls and women for the first training phase and finally together with her, we opened up the first training session with 5-most vulnerable girls with support from Step Up Uganda (USA).
She presided our first graduation and gave a tremendous speech to the girls and community members attended, awaken the minds of girls and women to have skills.
Before she died, she was serving as a subcounty women councilor, representing the women of Ntenjeru Subcounty (including those of her own Katosi community) at the District Assembly.
She presented a lot of women ideas and needs to the District Assembly and genuinely struggled to bring positive feedback to the people she represented.
Her struggle contributed to many benefits to the women (especially girls) which included provision of adult learning centers, skills training programs supported by AVSI Foundation, sensitization on land rights supported by International Justice Mission and so much more.
On the other hand, Mastulla was an active member of a large community NGO known as Katosi Women Development Trust (KWDT), serving as a field assistant in 2013 and genuinely engaged in many developmental policies benefiting the women involved in fishing, farming and trade activities.
I also learned that she was an active tool in encouraging women to work hard to benefit from many KWDT projects such as group micro loans, revolving water tank scheme among others.
She was a hardworking widow, running a fishing, tailoring (sewing) and trading businesses in Katosi community, ahead of serving as a political leader and therefore served as a good example to women especially widows that women are ambitious and can still live to the top of their dreams even after the death of their husbands.
Mastulla has been an active environmentalist. she has been participating in many tree planting projects with her two public sensitization sayings…“You cannot separate trees and people,” and “It is important to go beyond tree planting and secure the livelihood of the people around the lake. A hungry person cannot protect the environment.”
This spearheaded many Agro-forestry projects around this community and more especially on the lake shores to prevent erosion.
As an active and general local council executive leader, Mastulla settled many community and family disputes and i could put it right that every citizen referred to her for assistance.
We also account and credit her for fighting child labor (cutting the number of children involved in fishing), illegal fishing, child sacrifice, child & women abuse, domestic violence, illegal land acquisition, women (widows) rights and many more.
As Katosi Intercommunity Development Alliance, we account this as a great loss to the community we serve and drive towards change and development. Our community change approach works in partnership with community leaders to physically identify community needs, find a suitable solution and implement it.
So far, this approach has been applicable with assistance of active leaders and Mastulla was one of those leaders.
She served a very good example to the community, therefore,the work we have now is to continue working hard to bridge the gap, lift her legacy and permanently sustain the change we have achieved together during her time.
As a writer, this is just a piece of what Mastulla did for her people and community.
May the Lord grant her soul an eternal rest!
Katosi Intercommunity Development Alliance
Read more about Late. Namaganda Mastulla below;