Galo Githo: A student icon, an activist who paid the price fighting social injustice

Galo Githo in a phone shop. Photo by William Mugeni.

By James William Mugeni

United States of America—1, October 2020: Editor, the flames in the ivory tower of Makerere University could have smoldered and plans are underway to restore it.

The Chinese government already is making suggestions to have this done. This tower was a symbol for academic excellence.

I am not an alumnus of Makerere, but I carry the pain of having not made it to Makerere, and I have always admired those who went to Makerere. In my project work with Centers for Disease Control (CDC), I happened to have worked with doctors and other social workers who went to Makerere, but there was this one person; he did not only go to Makerere but went to Kings College Budo too. He looked invincible.

He would speak with his huge head, not that he had a huge head, but a combination of Kings College Budo and Makerere made him carry this huge picture of a big head.

It is with this Makerere aura that I find it necessary to write about Galo Githo Renny Stephen. Brought to St. Peter’s College Tororo by priests who picked him from a major seminary as a genius, he was with us for four years and earned himself a distinguished certificate of merit in academic excellence, let alone scoring his grades highly at O level.

The priests again took him to St. Marys’ College Kisubi just trying to reward him for his academic wizardry. What happened in Kisubi maybe an old boy from Kasubi will pick up from me and I am quite sure they will talk well about him.

While at St. Peters College Tororo, if we must go by the student community ratings, Galo Githo was loved. Being the smallest, we called him the tiniest boy; he was a unique character who not only was funny, but a master of charm language loaded with wisdom.

You could easily go to bed late listening to our charm star. When he left for Kasubi, many students would have loved to go along with him. There was avoid; a school minus Githo was unimaginable.

Like I said, I did not study in Makerere, but Makerere is this place that has shaped my life especially for not joining. I am always trying to follow with keen interest those who go to Makerere. At times, just trying to challenge those who went to Makerere when I do something that they cannot do makes me happy.

This story is one of those challenges I am beating at those who went to Makerere. I want them to challenge my efforts in championing values in Galo Githo.

The distinctive atmosphere or quality that seems to surround and be generated by those who went to Makerere is so infectious but sometimes it is just puff ball mushroom like that, gets deflated with a kick.

In this write up, I am trying to challenge those who went to Makerere: what went wrong with Galo Githo Renny Stephen that makes him to live the life of squalor that I discovered after the burning of the ivory tower? What happened to the priests who detached a village boy from us that it appears led to his eventual demise? Was Galo Githo Stephen a genius in a wrong place? Is there anyone who can volunteer his story in Makerere that led to his ascent to the guild leadership of Makerere? Was his ascent to the guild presidency an unnecessary exposure that finally created an atmosphere where he was regarded as a threat?

When I saw Makerere burning from my room in USA, my mind raced straight to Galo Githo Renny Stephen and straight away I made a social media post that Makerere burning is equivalent to expelling Galo Githo Renny Stephan. I launched a search for him; you do not want to see the pictures of Galo Githo I found.

Galo Githo currently. Photo by Willian Mugeni.

So sad that very many are blaming him, but if we are not blaming Makerere and we are very ready to restore the ivory tower, why not the short tower which is Galo Githo? He is another burnt ivory tower that I now call the short tower.

After my search and appealing to well-wishers, we have connected Galo Githo Renny Stephen to the world and I am now launching a worldwide search of doctors, lawyers, social workers and all those who will come up to restore Galo Githo Renny Stephen to humanity.

Galo Githo literally is a name the Luos give to some who has seen a lot of suffering days; this is reminiscent of what Galo Githo has gone through.  Galo Githo means staying long on earth makes you see sorrow. How predictive his parents could be!

Can the world turn around the man who has not died into a champion of social justice? Can the world of medicine release Galo Githo into the world of public administration?

The Galo Githo I have found is in squalor but the knowledge he exudes is for those who lead and influence the world. He is more mature and wittier.

Join me to make use of the little time we have on earth to make a life better.

The author is a Medical Clinical Officer/ Certified Public Manager.

Email:, cellphone number: +1 515-3465317

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