Former assistant minister,who also served as Rangwe MP Prof Ouma Muga died yesterday at Kikuyu hospital, a man shunned by his community.
Prof Muga, who once served as President Daniel arap Moi’s speech-writer, died after a long illness.
Few young people know of him but those above 40 years from Rangwe constituency will tell you what a brilliant individual he was.
In this era and age where the value of a University certificate is slowly ebbing, it is difficult to find a graduate who can be described as ‘Impossibly Intelligent’.
Born and raised in a remote village-Kochia- in Homa Bay district, his brilliance caught the public attention when he sat for his Kenya African Secondary School Examination (KASE) at St. Mary’s Yala. He emerged the top student nation-wide.
He proceeded to sit for the Cambridge Overseas School Certificate in 1957 in the same school and once again topped the whole country.
He joined Makerere University where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geography.
Afterwards, he did his Master of Science degree(MSC) in Australia and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in fluvial geomorphology in a record time-frame.
Prof Ouma became a lecturer at Makere in 1966. There, he held a post of Secretary General and then Chairman of the University Academic Staff Association of Makerere.
Proffesor has done a lot of research. Of interest is the one he did on Ozone layer which earned him worlwide recognition.
He has written a book on Luo History and two others on Evolution of Environment Resource Base in East Africa and English Encyclopaedic Dictionary of Dholuo language.
He became Vice Chancellor at Moi University and founded the School of Environment Studies at the same institution.
He later ventured into national politics and was elected MP for Rangwe in 1989 on KANU ticket. He was appointed Assistant Minister for Environment. He recaptured the same seat in 1992 on FORD Kenya ticket after the introduction of multi-party democracy.
Due to his nature of speaking his mind, he easily disagreed with Raila Odinga who was the Luo community political leader. This led to his failure to win the parliamentary seat of Rangwe.
Being the kind of a man he is, nothing can never stop him from speaking his mind. In 2006 at a funeral in Kochia West that was attended by a majority of Luo Leaders, he publicly claimed that Raila Odinga wasn’t going to clinch the Presidency seat. This would later spark a wave of public uproar and the former chairman of Luo Council of Elders immediately responded to him terming him a ‘mad man’.
Kenya and his community turned their back on such a genius and no one is willing to put such brains int good use. As usual, in death, he is being celebrated.
Before his death, he had been detained in hospital after he failed to pay a bill amounting to less than Ksh 1 million.
Prof has two sons and a daughter whom he took to School and are highly placed in different fields starting with Peter Muga aka Maembe Olo now married to an Australian in Tanzania. Another one is a lecturer at Strathmore University and lastly his daughter is a high ranking UN senior staff. They have abandoned the father completely.
The Prof was sacked by Moi as the Assistant Minister of Environment because he joined FORD KENYA in push for multiparty Democracy we enjoy today. He helped NARC Government to establish Ministry of State and Special Program to develop policies and he established NDMU & NDOC that handles Disaster in the country today.
Australia is purely on the Leeward side of BLUE ALPS MOUNTAINS and that means it was purely desert.UN selected a team of 7 world elites scientists in 1964 and from Africa ,Muga was chosen to help Australia in reforming the dry country. Today Australia is the world Leading Rice Exporter.
He is the one who introduced the terminology “GLOBAL WARMING” when he explained the long term effect of Depletion of the Ozone Layer as a result of greenhouse gas emissions due to 1st world rapid industrialisation.Through him UNISDR and UNEP have a working Frameworks eg Kyoto Protocol,COP/MOP,HFA1 & now Sendai Framework for DRR.
Through his own Africa Renaissance For Environmental Studies he made it possible to draft our first ever National Disaster Management Policy recently ratified by the cabinet.
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