Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya leaves ntv
Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya is a Journalist, businesswoman, mother and a wife. Photo/NBS TV

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya is a Journalist, businesswoman, mother and a wife.

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya is one of the Ugandan celebrated Luganda News Anchor who worked at Nations Media Group NTV Akawungeezi news desk for the last 11 years, and today she has crossed over to NBS Television, NTV’s rival after 8 months of vacation ever since she resigned from NTV.

Sekaya has viewers trust, because of her unique style and articulation of words, something she says she’s thankful to God of.

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya is also a hard-working woman, who can do anything provided there is money in it, unlike stealing and what some women do on the streets at night.

Sekaya’s Early Life and Education

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya was born in 1982 as Hatma Nalugwa, to Mr Christopher Kyobe Damulira and Mrs Proscovia Damulira, in Zana a Kampala suburb along Entebbe road.

Her mother is a born of Kitetikka Village, still, a Kampala suburb which her maternal grandparents owned some time back, while his father is a born of Kiteezi, still in Kampala the present day waste dumping ground.

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya leaves ntv

Her background is a middle-income class, though not very rich, Sekaya never struggled in life, generally, life was simple and relatively good.

“We were rich with huge land almost the whole village, we were rich but average, money was there. Our parents paid our fees, we did not encounter any hardship as far as school requirements are concerned. God has been so good to us.”

Sekaya is the 4th born to a family of six, from her mother. In her early school times, Sekaya attended Clock Tower Nursery School in Kampala, which no longer exists.

And then she moved to Nakivubo Primary School Kampala, from where she attained her P.7 certificate. “by then it was a good school, but today I feel hurt whenever I pass by and see it states.”

From Nakivubo P/S, Sekaya joined Barclays Senior School for her S.1 & S.2, as it was called by then.

But in S.3, Sekaya moved to St Joseph S.S Nagalama, along Kayunga road from where she obtained her O-Level Certificate and A-Level Certificate. She offered HEG/D subject combination at her A-Level class.

After St. Joseph’s S.S Nagalama, Sekaya was admitted to Makerere University from where she graduated in 2005 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Works and Social Administration.

It was unfortunate that she was not offered the course she yearned for, on government sponsorship and ended up studying Social Works and Social Administration (SWASA).

Sekaya’s dream course was Mass-Communication, but MUK was offering her Education on government sponsorship, which she didn’t like at all.

“Because by then we used to despise being a teacher, but today when asked again, I can say education. Because I have come to realise that’s they were young thoughts, that’s why I had that kind of attitude towards being a teacher. Today I see that vocational courses are the way to go.”

Sekaya’s School Days

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya was a naughty girl but active in MDD, during her Primary School years. However, in her high school days, she turned to be a stubborn girl, particularly in her S.4 class.

“I will never forget my S.4 class in 1999, oh my God! I was stubborn. Stubborn but bright anyway, because I remember we were the most beaten up students at Nagalama that year. We were very stubborn, but I thank God we went through and performed well.”

She was an actress at school. Sekaya says she can act today, provided there’s a message the concept sends out there. 

Work and Experience

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya started working after her graduation in 2006, at her mother’s shoe shop in Owino Market Kampala in 2006, six months after she gave birth to her first child.

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya leaves ntv
Hatma Nalugwa leaves NTV Uganda for NBS TV

One day she came across a four paged advert on Daily Monitor, it was Africa Broadcasting Uganda Limited running job vacancies.

“They wanted TV hosts, marketers, salesmen and women and the likes. So, I said, I think I can do sales because I am here helping my mum with sales. But I didn’t know the requirements. So when I checked out the deadline for applications, it was that very day I read the application.”

So, I wrote the application letter very fast and rushed back home in Zana, collected my academic papers and hurried up to the post office.”

By then, they had to send the application letters via post office to Nairobi. But on arrival, she was informed that the last batch has just been forwarded, but the officer she talked to was so lenient, so Sekaya was asked to post her documents though it was late, you never know, the officer said.

Two weeks later, Sekaya got a call, “they asked, is this Robinah Nalugwa? I said yes! you applied for sales post at Africa Broadcasting Limited, we are calling you for an interview at Serena Hotel on such and such a day.”

“So, I went, met the panel of interviewers, asked for my experience, I said I work with my mum for the last 8 months. What do you do? I sell shoes, and I came back. So, after another two weeks, I got another call, but this call I got like at 6: pm, it was a lady calling. Hello, tomorrow you have an interview at Speke Hotel at 11 am, I said okay fine.”

But when this person went off, Sekaya wondered? questioning why she had to call passed working hours? And asking her to come for an interview in a hotel? She hesitated and said, I think these people are up for something else, but later on she went.

However, the time scheduled for the interview was 11 am, but Sekaya arrived at 11:30 am because she had doubts about whether it’s a job interview or something else?

Surprisingly, it was a real interview! And the first lot had already entered. “I said I am finished! but then they told me that the first lot is in, so, you will come in for the second lot, I entered and it was an interview! so I did the interview.”

After one week, Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya was called again to go pick her appointment letter at Serena Business Centre. They had given her sales, but she did not know what she was going to sell.

Sekaya didn’t have an idea that they were to sell a TV Station or something like that. It was the 1st of September 2006. And when she entered Nile Hall, she saw the late Rosemary Nankabirwa, Maurice Mugisha, Kazoora and many other TV stars, who are currently not on the limelight.

They briefed them, and they were going to sell a TV Station. They grouped them up for a three months training in different fields, that includes TV Production, programming, TV News, so, it was through that training that Sekaya discovered that she can read the news.

Because they could go to the field, come back and then report. One day they asked who among them would like to be news anchors? Sekaya came up because she had a passion to be a news anchor way back.

She used to admire former TV stars like Brenda Nabiryo, Beatrice Akello of U-TV, the way they presented, articulation of words and style.

During those times, Sekaya could sit, look in the mirror and imitate them. So, when the opportunity arrived, she grabbed it passionately and tried out her luck. They had a trainer called Shalie! who said that “I think you can cross over from sales to the news.”

That’s how Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya landed in the journalism career at NTV Akawungeezi News Desk. So, that was the first professional job she did for the last twelve years before she resigned.

Sekaya’s First-time experience on the TV

“My first-time appearance on TV, I was nervous and anxious! Remember you are the only person in the Studio with the Camera and the director. But back in your mind, you see that hundreds of people are back watching you.”

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya narrates that, the questions that went round mind at that particular hour is that will you make mistakes, will you do it right, focus on how you have dressed.

“Remember I did not attend a Mass-Communication class, and I think it’s a talent on my side, because doing something you have never attended a class of, is not easy. But I thank God I made it and gained confidence and the following day I was a bit okay.”

By the time Sekaya joined NTV Akawungeezi anchoring team, it was Frank Walusimbi, Faridah Nakazibwe and her on the Luganda news desk. But by then Faridah had gone for maternity leave, so Sekaya began right away.

Challenges

“The viewers’ expectations are always high, yet in reality, you are something else. They see you on TV smartly dressed, make-up, me outside the screen I am not a make-up person. So, when that person finds you on the street, she/he asks are you the one? as you look different, so they end to reticulating you.”

“Then they expect you to have a lot of money, please we don’t have the money as you think. A person may ask you for a hundred thousand, and then you say I don’t have, but they cannot believe that in reality, you don’t have it, then they label you Hatma is a mean person, shows off something like that.”

“When you are interviewing someone, some under look you, things of the kind.”

What made Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya a good news anchor

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya joins NBS
Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya talks what prompted her move to NBS from NTV

Sekaya says Confidence and love for what she does are what outstands her. “When you are confident, it makes people out there believe in you as a person and what you present.”

Being audible “You have to be audible. I mean not shouting but when someone does not need to strain ears to get what you are saying, like what has she said?”

“Presentation matters. In our school times, they taught us how to present ourselves in terms of the posture you have to be serious when speaking to someone. At school, they caned us for that. People take me to be hard, though I mean what I say, I mean business when I am behind the Camera.”

“You have to be yourself if you are Sarah be Sarah! don’t try to be Hatma, because you will never be Hatma. Some people say I want to be like Hatma, then you start copying everything she does, right from dressing that’s being a copy cat. Build your brand, because a lot of people confuse me with Faridah, that she is my look alike, but everyone does her staff.”

“Faridah is very soft-spoken and I am the other way round. So everyone does her staff, Frank has his style, Faridah has her own, and me I have my style. When you insist on copying another! still, people will tell that you are copying and the thing will not work out well. Copy the good things and do them in your style to make a brand.”

“We work as a team! we’ve built a team for the last 12 years, and I think because we love what we do. I thank our editor Williams Kato, that guy is so amazing and grateful! He has done a very good job in us, he has nurtured us with an iron hand to see that we don’t shame him and to see that we don’t break his product. And generally we work as a team, we love ourselves and we are grateful that we received training at school and on the job.”

And we keep searching for new things, what should we do, where should correct, we don’t sit back and relax.

Also, you have to be smart in out and articulate.

Sekaya resigns

Sekaya resigned in December 2018.

“I took a rest like any other, I needed a break to reflect where I am going because I am 36 and I am not growing any younger! I am a born of 1982. So I said; I am soon clocking the fourth floor what do I have like me? so I said let me take a rest and see where to put my energy and power, maybe if I still have the face, teeth I may bounce back.”

“I reflected the veteran journalists they don’t have many achievements, some have died renting residential houses and some you find them appealing to the public for fundraising. Honestly being a journalist sometimes you don’t find time to make your own money.”

“Remember you are employed on permanent employment; you have to be there 24/7, even the week you are anchoring you have to be there! so you don’t get your own time to do your business. Then I said no I won’t be poor let me break off a bit, build my own thing then may bounce back again.”

“Another thing we grow old, every year students graduate from Makerere, Nkozi, MUBS and elsewhere they need jobs, I won’t stay there to die from one place. So, I saw that I have to start planning for my old age early, that why I resigned to concentrate on my outside catering business I do now.”

“And God is so God that it has gone so well. I can’t say I am retired because I am still energetic with a good voice, my teeth still on, the face is not yet too old, so I can’t say I am retired I just took a rest being on a break.”

“So I don’t know whether I will be back on NTV, only time will tell because my fans are complaining they want me back. I believe they still love me. My children used to demand my care because I would come home late! remember leaving the office at 8 pm drive through the traffic jam, reach home at 10 pm. My husband is already home; I am a Muganda Woman as a growing child they used to tell me a man shouldn’t arrive before you home, so I could fill guilty, finding my husband already home not taken tea and whatever.”

“So I said let me take a break and take care of my family and the children. I used to see them only in the morning when taking them to school, see them a bit, say bye-bye then rush for work. And at night you find them asleep and again I did not have time for them during weekends, because my catering service is usually on weekends.”

Why catering

Sekaya says she ventured into catering business because there’s money in the business.

“You will never go wrong with food. People will never stop eating, going to school and falling sick. There’s money in this business, but why catering? I have a passion for the kitchen since my childhood, even my mum knows that I love cooking.”

Hatma’s Kitchen and Café is the official brand name for her outside catering services designed for all kinds of functions, but she hopes to set up a restaurant soon.

Family

Hatma Nalugwa Sekaya is from a Christian background but got married to a Muslim man, Mr Sekaya. Her Christian name is Pamela Robinah Nalugwa.

This is her 10th year in marriage with Sekaya. Her dress code implies that she’s married to someone who loves her truly and supports her because it’s not easy given the fact that she’s from a Christian background.

“Someone who does not torture you why not do what pleases him or what represents respect for him and doing what he wants you to do for him.”

Sekaya says she stopped wearing short clothes simply because she respects her husband, and a sign of love for the family she went to. And if you love someone, things work out automatically.