Up at 5:15am to catch the 6am bus to Fort Portal which left at 7am on the dot. Very crowded but no animals sharing seats. A traveling salesman in an ‘English Jesters’ hat then spent the next 4 1/2 hours trying to sell sweets, aphrodisiacs and Gods knows what else to all the people on the bus – who I suspect were buying from him just to shut him up. Fort Portal is 200km west of Kampala and lies at an altitude of 5,500 feet at the base of the Rwenzori mountains. These mountains, which are famous for their gorillas and chimpanzees, separate Uganda from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) on the other side. The Rwenzori mountains are often referred to as Mountains of the Moon (attributed to Ptolemy – Egyptian geographer)
The bus was met by Johnny McCluskey, a Scotsman and a VMM volunteer who had been working for the last six months to get Camara’s Ugandan operations at Mountains of the Moon University (MMU) off the ground. After two years working in Uganda Johnny was due to leave at the end of May, and so one of the main objectives on this trip was to find some one to fill his shoes.
MMU was founded 3 years ago and is one of the only universities to serve the west of Uganda. Two of its main areas of focus are ICT and Education – a perfect match for Camara. The current Vice Chancellor of the University is Dr Douglas Nesbit, another Scotsman from Aberdeen (I think they are attracted by the highlands) who is probably prone to a bit of Scottish dancing in a kilt after a few drinks. Maybe Kirsty could bring her kilt next time she visits! Douglas has a back ground in logistics.
Said goodbye to Johnny and thanked him for his tremendous efforts in getting the Camara project off the ground. Johnny was off to Gulu at 5am the next day. Gulu is the area where the Lords Resistance Army (LRA) has its operations.