By Ahmad Muto
British Olympics commentator Rob Walker became famous in Uganda after showing his knowledge about the country and its people following Peruth Chemutai’s win at the just concluded Tokyo Olympics. He has now been invited by government through the Ministry of Education and Sports and the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB).
Hon. Hamsom Obua, the state minister for sports, made the revelation on Wednesday at Parliament. He said the country has extended Walker an invitation because he “proudly talked about Uganda’s beautiful features.” He praised Uganda as a one of the friendliest and most beautiful countries one can ever visit, but also made a point about how its people loved drinking and were going to guzzle litres of ‘Nile.’
Via his Twitter, he accepted the invitation and tweeted ‘It will be brilliant to come back to Uganda for the first time since 2017.”
That said, he is still making comments about the Pearl of Africa. On thespotsman.com, he penned a long article about his experience in Tokyo as a broadcaster and well, he saved the best for last – Uganda.
According to him, Uganda is underrated in the region by those that have not been here, but having experienced Uganda many times on projects uplifting the youth, he has learned about its people and languages.
“The icing on the cake from my perspective was being noticed in Uganda! I have been there many times for youth work and love the country. As such, I know a few phrases of the local language and have a passing knowledge of the geography and culture,” he wrote.
He added: “Uganda is sometimes regarded as the poor relation in East Africa, behind the likes of near neighbours Kenya in terms of international standing and tourism. It is an undeserved tag usually bestowed upon them by people who have never been there.”
He noted that the curiosity to find out his identity was palpable in the Ugandan team in Tokyo given how he spoke about the country, which got him an additional 5,000 followers on Twitter, DMs and offers of a second wife and herds of cattle.
Uganda left Tokyo with four medals –Joshua Cheptegei’s Gold in the men’s 5,000m and Silver in 10,000m while Jacob Kiplimo won Bronze in the same race. Peruth Chemutai won Gold in the women’s 3,000m steeplechase.