Kampala, Uganda: 29th November 2021: Today, the Mastercard Foundation announced the appointment of, Adrian R. Mulindwa Bukenya, as the new Country Head for Uganda.
Bukenya is a seasoned executive with over 20 years of global professional experience in the energy, infrastructure, and financial services sectors. Sixteen of these were spent in operations across Africa in senior leadership roles. He will be assuming Samuel Yalew Adela’s position who recently relocated to Ethiopia where he is serving as the Mastercard Foundation’s Country Head, Ethiopia.
As Uganda Country Head, Bukenya will continue to drive the vision and roll out of the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works strategy in Uganda. The strategy, which was launched in Uganda in July 2020, aims to enable more than three million young people in the country to access dignified and fulfilling work opportunities by 2030. At the launch, the Foundation announced its commitment of $200 million to ensure young women, men, and refugees in Uganda have access to economic opportunities.
The Mastercard Foundation has been working in Uganda, its first partner country in Africa, since 2008. Prior to the launch of Young Africa Works, the Foundation had already committed more than $282 million towards expanding access to finance, education, and skills training to more than two million people, including farmers, students, teachers, and out-of-school youth across the country.
Young Africa Works in Uganda focuses on three economic sectors, including agriculture, tourism and hospitality, and construction and housing. The Mastercard Foundation continues to work with a range of partners to realize its goals under Young Africa Works, including the Private Sector Foundation Uganda, The Innovation Village, Gudie Leisure Farm, GOAL Uganda, the National Social Security Fund, Uganda Rural Development Training Institute, and Equity Bank Uganda.
One of Bukenya’s immediate priorities is the implementation of the Foundation’s country strategy and roadmap that will address the root causes of unemployment and underemployment of young people. His focus will be on continuing to build inclusive partnerships that engage and invest in young people in rural areas, poor urban centres, young people with disabilities, and young refugees and their host communities.
Speaking of the announcement, Daniel Hailu, Regional Director, Southern and Eastern Africa at the Mastercard Foundation said “We are excited to welcome Adrian to the Foundation as our Country Head, Uganda. Uganda holds a special place for us as the first country in which the Mastercard Foundation launched its work in Africa. As we continue to grapple with the effects of the pandemic, the Foundation has doubled down on our commitment to enabling three million young Ugandans, particularly young women, to access dignified and fulfilling work. Adrian will continue to work in close collaboration with our partners to achieve this ambitious goal”.
Bukenya joins the Mastercard Foundation from Baker Hughes Uganda where, as Country Manager, he provided legal and regulatory advisory services to the Baker Hughes & GE Businesses.
Previously, Bukenya held leadership positions at Tullow Uganda Operations, Shell Oil Products Africa, Macquarie Bank, and Black & Decker Corporation, Maryland, USA.
Bukenya, who has a wide range of experience, including business development, government relations, regulatory affairs, organizational transformation, stakeholder engagement, and people growth and development, is also charged with mobilizing the learning and research agenda to inform the Young Africa Works in Uganda partnership strategies to drive innovation and take solutions to unemployment to scale.
He holds an MBA in Finance & Economics from the University of Oxford, Said Business School, Oxford, UK and a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Drexel University, Philadelphia PA USA, and International Baccalaureate Diploma from St. Mary’s School, Nairobi, Kenya.