THE KNIGHT. Mushin Nuwagaba Kaduyu is the Chief Executive Officer of Allied Muslim Youth Uganda (AMYU) an organisation that promotes religious unity. He spoke to Godfrey Lugaaaju about single mothers and finding the right partner.
Tell me about yourself
I am a Muslim, founder and team leader of Allied Muslim Youth Uganda (AMYU). I am the third born in a family of eight children; two boys and six girls born to Sheikh Abdunoor Kaduyu and Mariam Kaduyu of Mbarara.
I studied Islamic theology and Arabic from Bilal Islamic Institute. I have a bachelor’s degree in administrative and secretarial science and I am pursuing a master’s degree in Peace and Conflict studies from Makerere University.
I am a passionate peace practitioner with interest in religious pluralism, and the prevention of radicalisation and violent extremism among the youth.
Aside from your work at Allied Muslim Youth, what else do you do?
I am always invited to engage in mainstream debates on religious pluralism, preventing violent extremism and radicalisation on different media platforms both locally and internationally.
I also do public speaking on different occasions for purposes of inspiring. I am pursuing a Masters degree so doing research is a necessity. I like reading too.
How do you balance all these?
I live with a core principal of making time for everything important in my life.
Who do you look up to in public speaking?
My father, Sheikh Abdunoor Kaduyu, all those who have listened to him will tell you that he is a gifted speaker. I always prayed to be like him when I grew up.
Which books do you read?
I am not a one-book reader, I read everything readable. However, I have always found books like Love and Tolerance, Statue of Our Souls, among others very inspiring.
You say you are passionate about religious pluralism yet your organisation is restricted to Muslims
Allied Muslim Youth Uganda is not an organisation for Muslims as the name may suggest. It is only faith-inspired but the activities such as preventing radicalisation and violent extremism are all-embracing and non-restrictive. We have volunteers from almost all religious denominations.
Do you think religion should be the basis of a relationship?
Religion is an important aspect in the lives of very many people and mine as well. It informs the way we think and behave towards others. A true religious person is a representative and symbol of peace, love, tolerance, respect and everything good. Who would not wish to relate with such a person?
What is your take on marriage these days?
Some marriages are successful but others are very materialistic, selfish and not founded on the values of love, tolerance and respect. Marriage is like a building.
If the foundation is weak, it is bound to collapse. Maybe that explains the rising number of divorce cases.
What nags you about women?
I do not have much experience with women. I cannot tell.
Does this mean you are not married?
Yes, I am not yet married.
Are you afraid of commitment?
(Laughs)….not really, I have just not yet met the right person.
Who, in your opinion, is the right person?
A friend you can always count on and who has your best interests at heart. She has to be very selfless and helps you become a better person in all dimensions.
Would you date a non-Muslim?
If dating in this context means getting to know someone from another faith, yes. I would do that.
And dating in context of a relationship?
(Laughs), I would.
What would you do if a girl you found attractive hints on you?
Probably smile and let her know that it is very okay for humans to respectfully express their feelings.
What is your definition of a beautiful woman?
One with purity in her will, intentions and actions. One with a kind and compassionate heart like that of Mary, mother of Jesus, peace be upon Him.
How do you relax?
I love drinking tea in quiet places with friends. I watch comedy series and play football. I also read, do volunteer work, travel, write and socialise.
Who is your favourite female artiste and why?
That would be Rema Namakula simply because she was a classmate at Kyambogo University.
And female politician
I do not like politics so much but I respect the right honorable Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga. She inspires very many young girls out there.
Giving support to single mothers
“I have always admired single mothers, especially those struggling to keep their children in school. I have also met a number of young women doing amazing things and positively impacting their communities. I empathise with them. As AMYU, we seek to channel our empathy towards practical ends. We have trained some of them to help them make decent earnings and support their families.”