The outgoing Ambassador of the Republic of Korea Park Jong-Dae has called on the Vice President Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi to bid him farewell after his tour of duty in Uganda as South Korea’s Head of Mission in Kampala.
During the meeting at the Vice President’s Office in Kampala, Ssekandi appreciated Ambassador Park’s passion for Uganda’s development and strengthening of ties between the two countries which he said have facilitated high level interactions between the two countries.
The Vice President cited President Yoweri Museveni’s first ever official visit to South Korea and a reciprocal visit by Korean President last year during which several bilateral commitments where made between the two countries.
Ssekandi said that Ambassador Park was leaving at the time Uganda needed him most as it endeavors to learn from Korea’s history how it transformed from one of Asia’s poorest to the top 15 world industrialised economies in just 30 years.
He also observed that Uganda will continue supporting regional and global efforts aimed at pacifying the Korean Peninsula and looks forwards to a day when the two Koreas will return to talks aimed at unifying the North and South into a single country.
He also expressed Uganda’s appreciation to the people and Government of South Korea for the support extended to Uganda including the Kampiringisa farmers’ and leadership training centre, Ntinda Vocational Centre, Soroti fruit factory currently under construction, the training of Ugandans in various fields among others and wished Ambassador Park a successful career at his next station.
Ambassador Park said he was indebted to Government and people of Uganda for the support and care he received during his 7-year tour of duty in Uganda which he said was one of the longest periods in the history of diplomatic service of his country and asked that the same support be extended to his successor.
Ambassador Park, who will be leaving over the weekend for Pretoria, South Africa, where he will be serving his last term as his country’s diplomat, said he has enjoyed a good time in Uganda and promised to return to Uganda, more so after retiring.
Park, who grew up in Uganda as the son of a diplomat, was educated at Aga Khan High School in the 70s before returning to Seoul following the Embassy closure in Kampala He will be replaced by Kim You-churl, formerly Korea’s Deputy Head of Mission in Nicosia-Cyprus.
The South Korea Embassy in Kampala was re-established as a fully-fledged Embassy in 2012 after 17 years of closure and downgrade of diplomatic relationship with Uganda to the level of a consulate. The closure in 1994 followed the restructuring in foreign services by the Asian Tiger.