Zoom webinar on the Science Behind COVID-19

In a bid to counter fake news and misleading propaganda during these tough times, the Ministry of ICT & National guidance, GCIC, in conjunction with Konrad Adenauer Stiftung took an initiative to have webinars that will air live on the National Broadcaster, UBC under the theme: The Science Behind COVID-19.

Citizens will get a chance to join these conversations and have an interaction with the experts as they get more knowledge and information about this deadly virus.

Moderated by Mr. Maurice Mugisha, Deputy MD, UBC, the panelists will be Dr. Diana Atwiine, Prof. Pauline Byakika, Prof. Pontiano Kaleebu, Dr. Daniel Okello (On Zoom video call) and Dr. Yonas Tegegn (On Zoom video call). 


We took a glance at the background of all these panelists and had a look at their credentials so as to know and also prepare the entire community about what to expect from these medical experts. Here is what we managed to find out;

The Webinar ID for the Conversation
  1. Dr. Diana Atwine Kanzira

This noble woman has risen to prominence and received public plaudits during this crisis period. We can attribute all that to the level of professionalism and soberness she has demonstrated during this COVID-19 scourge.

This intelligent woman is an egret; she attended Bweranyangi Girls Secondary School for her O level, performed very well and made it to St. Mary’s Namagunga for her A level. Focused as she was, she went for specialty when it came to University and as others were looking for all ways to join big and prestigious universities, she picked Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) in Mbarara district.

While at the giant Western Ugandan University, a youthful Diana Atwiine pursued a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery. She later went on to specialize in internal medicine at the same university and she was awarded a Master of Medicine. 

Dr. Diana Atwiine worked for a brief period at St. Francis Hospital Nsambya before joining the Uganda Joint Clinical Research Centre (JCRC). In everything she did, Diana demonstrated high levels of professionalism, with a personality already characterized by discipline, humility and calmness.

No wonder, she was later picked to work in State House as the President’s private secretary in charge of Medical Affairs. In this capacity, she also served as one of the President’s personal physicians. In November 2016, Dr Diana was appointed as the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health. She has since continued to serve with maximum diligence in this very crucial ministry.

  1. Dr. Pauline Byakika

If you had to mention females that have made their mark in regards to the health sector, this name would be very difficult to avoid. The highly proficient lady graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery in 1999 from Makerere University. She also acquired a Masters in Internal Medicine from the same university. Her utmost resilience saw her also graduate with another Masters of Science in Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics from Makerere University. Dr Pauline acquired a Doctorate in Philosophy and Clinical Pharmacology from Trinity College Dublin, in Ireland. Her PhD thesis analyses interaction between antimalarials and anti-removal drugs. 

Dr Pauline Byakika has served as a Medical Officer at Mulago National Referral Hospital. She has also served as Senior House Officer, Registrar and Consultant in the department of medicine at the same hospital. She is currently teaching at Makerere University at the College of Health Sciences. In her career, Dr. Pauline Byakika has authored and co-written over 40 reviewed articles in areas of medical expertise. 

She is a well-known Physician in Uganda, an Internist, Epidemiologist, Academic and Researcher and an Associate Professor. From 2017 to date, she has served as the Vice President of the Uganda Medical Association, an umbrella that brings all medical personnel together. 

  1. Prof. Pontiano Kaleebu

The professor is a Ugandan Physician, Clinical Immunologist, HIV/AIDS researcher, Academic and Medical Administrator. He currently serves as the Executive Director at the Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI). Prof. Pontiano is well known for his hard work & dedication and no wonder, he concurrently serves as the Director of the Joint Clinical Research Unit owned by the Medical Research Council (UK), UVRI and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine located in Entebbe. The Professor has not reached where he is by mistake and his education background speaks for itself;

Kaleebu graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery at Makerere University and interned at St. Francis Hospital Nsambya. His steadfastness saw him being awarded a scholarship to study Immunology at the Royal Postgraduate Medical School at Hammersmith Hospital in West London. As a result of his outstanding academic performance, he was offered the opportunity to pursue a Doctorate in Immunology by the University of London on a scholarship. 

After completing his PhD, Prof. Pontiano Kaleebu was recruited as a medical research officer at UVRI in 1987 and since then, he has risen through the ranks to become the Director at the Institute. His first shot at the top position came in the 2000’s when he became an acting Director. His confirmation would then come in 2010. He is an Honorary professor of Medicine at both Makerere University and London School of Hygiene and Tropical medicine.

Prof. Pontiano has also won career awards like; 

  • Scientific Achievement Award from Rotary International – 2003
  • Presidential Science Award 2005/2006
  • Fellowship of Imperial College, London Faculty of medicine – 2010

The professor has also co-authored more than 220 publications in peer reviewed journals.

  1. Dr. Daniel Okello

Dr. Daniel Okello is currently serving as Deputy Director – Curative Services at Kampala Capital City Authority. He also serves as the Acting Director – Public Health & Environment at the same authority. 

He graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery at Makerere University. He also graduated with a Master’s Degree in Health Services Management at Uganda Martyrs University in 2008/2009. 

Dr. Daniel Okello associates himself with groups such as;

  • Epidemiology & Health care 
  • Public Health Africa
  • Global Public health – Tuberculosis, malaria and neglected diseases
  • Africa Health Platform
  • Global Public Health – Social Determinants of Health 
  • Global Public Health – Emergencies and Disasters
  1. Dr. Yonas Tegegn 

Dr. Yonas graduated from Addis Ababa with a Doctorate in Medicine. 

He has worked with the World Health Organisation for 11 years and 3 months. He currently serves as the WHO representative to Uganda, a role he assumed in January 2018. The doctor worked as a Planning Officer in New Delhi from November 2015 to January 2018.  Uganda is not the first country where Dr. Yonas has worked as a WHO representative. He has also done this for D.P.R Korea and Thailand.

The Ministry of ICT & National Guidance expects to reap big from this lineup of panelists as a number of false myths about COVID19 will be demystified.

The discussion will be live on Uganda´s Television channel, UBC, Youtube and Facebook.

Link to join;

See full schedule of the Covid19 webinar below…