By Derrick Muduku
To many, being the Guild President at Uganda Christian University’s (UCU) Kampala campus and doing comedy at the same time is mutually exclusive. That was not the case for Mark Agaba. In 2019, Agaba, a famous figure in the entertainment circles, won the contest to become the campus’ top student leader.
The stand-up comedian, who goes by the stage name Uncle Mark, ably executed the two roles of comedy and student leadership.
His role as a student leader played a great part in Agaba scooping his most recent job as Public Relations Protocol Executive at Next Media Services, a media company in Uganda. Next Media Services owns NBS TV, Next Radio, news site Nile Post and Sanyuka TV.
“As Public Relations Protocol Executive, I am tasked with writing press releases, and reaching out to people who are engaging with our media outlets,” Agaba said. “This opportunity means a lot to me. I’m also expected to co-ordinate activities of Next Media Services with partner international media organizations, such as CNN and BBC.”
“I discovered my funny side during conversations with my friends,” he said. “Whenever I was around my peers, my comments would always leave them in stitches.” Agaba said that is what propelled him to take comedy more seriously and nurture his talent.
Agaba credits the virtues he learned at UCU for carving him into the person he is today.
“It is the virtues of Christ-centeredness, diligence, integrity and stewardship that I honor in every field of my life,” he said. “I have not found any better waves of transformation than these.”
Just how did Agaba manage to balance books, comedy and leadership?
“I endeavored to make the time for books, since I believed in leading, even in academics,” Agaba says. “I also have to give credit to the competent team with whom I served during my tenure as Guild President. I am grateful to my Vice President of the Guild leadership, Jemimah Jehopio, and the different heads of departments for their diligent service. They made my work a lot lighter and enjoyable.”
Phoebe Namujehe, the immediate past Guild President of UCU Kampala Campus, said Agaba, who was her predecessor, was a tolerant, humble, hardworking and committed leader.
Namujehe said Agaba often lit up the mood at the campus with his comedy. “Even as he read his manifesto, he was comical,” she said of the son of Jane Agaba and the late Godfrey Agaba from Kabale district in southwestern Uganda.
Before joining UCU, Agaba acquired a Bachelor of Arts in Economics at Makerere University. At UCU, he studied in the Bachelor of Social Work and Social Administration program.
Now that he has found his way onto the staff list of a major broadcaster in Uganda, Agaba says he will use the opportunity to further nurture his love for communication.