Johnson Agar Olwa, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Uganda, has delivered a public lecture at St Petersburg University. The event was heldwith the assistance of  the Committee for External Relations of St Petersburg.

Ambassador Johnson Agara Olwa met with students and lecturers of St Petersburg University who represented African studies and international relations. Aleksandr Zheltov, head of the Department of African Studies, told the distinguished guest that Africanist students study a number of indigenous languages of the African Continent - in particular, Bambara, Swahili, Hausa.

In 2019, the University has started admission to the bachelor’s programmeLanguages and Culture of East Africa (Ethiopian Studies)’, the master’s programmeLanguages and Cultures of Africa’; and doctoral programmes devoted to the study of African countries.

Johnson Agara Olwa told the audience what kind of life Uganda leads today, which role the state assigns itself on the African continent and in the Commonwealth of Nations, which opportunities for expanding cooperation with Russia and other countries exist. According to him, the Republic of Uganda pays special attention to building mutual understanding and strategic partnership with its closest neighbouring countriesRwanda, South Sudan, Kenya, Congo and Tanzania.

The Ambassador of the Republic of Uganda noted that today his state pursues an active policy to attract direct investment.  Also, the country does its utmost to enhance the education level of the population. So, even today there are scholarships and grants for training Ugandan citizens in other countries, including Russia. In its turn, the African state is ready to host young Russian specialists and students who want to get acquainted with the economy and culture of Uganda, he added.

Another initiative is to make the country more accessible for tourists. To achieve this, the Ugandan government has introduced an online visa system: to obtain a visa, one should just submit documents via the Internet. In general, the policy of Uganda, which has recently been torn up by the civil war, is today aimed at openness in all areas.

The people in Uganda are very hospitable. Here, in Russia, I understand that we are similar in this respect.
Johnson Agar Olwa, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Uganda

University students and academic staff asked the distinguished guest many questions. They were interested in: the environmental situation in the region; migration of refugees from Sudan to the territory of Uganda; as well as prospects for development in the field of academic programmes.

At the end of the meeting, Ambassador Johnson Agara Olwa emphasised that Uganda is facing many challenges and the state has to come a difficult way. To achieve this, the republic is intent upon attracting partners from all over the world.