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Peter Wamanga: Icon of life changing communication gone to soon

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Peter Wamanga: Icon of life changing communication gone to soon

His vision was to “Impact Lives Through Technology”. At only 28, he did this every day of his life. He aspired to be seen as a life-changing individual. Unfortunately, his journey has been cut short. Peter Wamanga is no more!

Described by colleagues at ASARECA and professional acquaintance’s across Africa and globally as a highly valued person, Peter Wamanga succumbed to Pneumonia at 7:00 am 18th May 2016 in a Kampala Hospital. He had been ill for about two weeks, but continued working, taking his condition as one of those simple ailments that come and pass. It was never the case.

Until his death, Peter was the Web Information Master in ASARECA, a designation which saw him manage ASARECA information databases and the website. He joined ASARECA in November 2010 from the East African Community Civil Aviation Safety and Security Oversight Agency (EAC-CASSOA).

ASARECA being a regional organization, Peter’s skills were not to be limited to the secretariat—he worked for Africa. He facilitated powerful African institutions, people and networks to work towards their converging goal of transforming livelihoods. One such projects that connected him to Africa and Africa to him was the Regional Agricultural Information and Learning Systems  (e-RAILS) network, a communication for development platform created by ASARECA in collaboration with the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA). He managed and trained trainers of trainers for e-RAILS platform, which became the driving force for the Dissemination of New Agricultural Technologies Africa, one of the largest projects in Africa. This project has been promoting the use of Orange Fleshed Sweet Potato and Quality Protein maize by farmers on the Continent. As the icon of information sharing within this platform, Peter became a household name. No wonder, when news a bout his death broke, email traffic expressing shock and grief overwhelmedservers at FARA-erails@dgroups.org, which hosts the dgroup. The administrators had to regulate the traffic.

Beyond ASARECA, Peter practiced the profession of Information Systems development with the objective of eradicating Poverty by Empowering Individuals and businesses with ICT. In his ideology, ICT is the best tool for narrowing the digital divide between powerful and emerging economies and, perhaps, the most exciting pathway to youth employment. Professional friends world-over including the CGIAR, FAO’s Family Farm Knowledge Platform (FFKP), the CGNET in California—and in Africa; FARA networks from Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, Malawi, Botswana, and the 11 ASARECA countries have mourned Peter as a high value person.

Peter was laid to rest on Sunday 22 May 2016 in Bulambuli near Mbale town in Eastern Uganda. As family, friends, colleagues, business associates and—yes—his fiancée, whom he was set to marry this year, struggle to accept the reality, may his hard work on earth, laughter, brilliance, intelligence, enterprise, energy and cheerfulness forever comfort us all.

Rest in Peace Peter