Tribute to late RIPE Sam Owori - Funeral Oration by Mrs.Agnes Norah Owori

SAM OWORI DIES

I have not yet accepted the reality of his death. The self in me wants to ask why this happened at this stage of his life just when he was at the peak of his Rotary career. On the contrary, the spirit of God in me tells me not to ask questions for I will not get any answers. So I will not ask God questions. Rather, let this be a time of celebrating Sam’s life.

Sam was a great man and a great inspiration in my life. I knew him all the way from our childhood days when we used to take the same road to school. He attended Kisoko Boys Primary and Kisoko Junior Secondary School which was co-educational. He went to Teso College, Aloet for his O-Level and King’s College, Budo for A-Level. He then proceeded to Makerere University where he graduated in Economics and Political Science in 1967.
Meanwhile, I had also gone my own way. After Kisoko Girls School, I went to Bubulo Girls School. Then I went to Nabumali High School for my O-Level, Mbale Senior Secondary School for A-Level and proceeded to National Teachers College where I qualified as a Grade Five teacher in 1968.
Our meeting later which culminated into marriage started in contradiction. At first I refused to be his girlfriend but he persisted until I accepted. We dated for six years and got married on 25th April, 1970. We are blessed with three sons, one granddaughter and two grandsons.

Sam was a good husband, father and grandfather. I have no regrets; not that we never had any misunderstandings. Like all married couples, we did have our own problems now and then, but got over them in a very short while. He was a man who feared and loved God. We were always reading and studying the Bible and praying together on a daily basis. He loved me and he really demonstrated that through the years. My husband really cared for me. He loved Rotary and served it with dedication and service to the people. This is how he was able to reach the pinnacle of the Rotary service ladder. He was intelligent and very diplomatic in the way he dealt with people. He helped educate many children, including his own relatives and non-relatives.
Sam was a banker by profession. He worked for the Uganda Commercial Bank for twenty - five years, eventually becoming Managing Director. Thereafter, the Government seconded him to the African Development Bank in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, where he served as Executive Director for six years. At the time of his death, he was Chief Executive Officer of the Institute of Corporate Governance, Uganda. He also served on several Boards.

Sam was in Rotary for close to forty years. We travelled to many places around the world because of Rotary and interfaced with people of different cultures.
Sam had a magnetic personality which easily attracted people to him. He was very popular with Rotarians. They loved him and will miss him dearly. When he made his acceptance speech at the Atlanta Convention last month, the standing ovation was such that his personal assistant remarked that she had worked with Rotary for twenty – five years, but had never witnessed anything like that.
It is only God who knows why Sam had to go now.
Sam, my darling, rest in the bosom of Jesus Christ.
I want to thank you all for loving him. Thank you and God bless you.