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Learn More about James Tumusiime


James Tumusiime is both an agricultural economist and one of East Africa’s pioneering cartoonists. Tumusiime is well-known for his Ugandan comic strip Ekanya and his comic strip Bogi Benda, which was published more widely in East Africa. In the mid 1970s, Tumusiime’s Ekanya began to be published in Voice of Uganda. In 1977, in the midst of Idi Amin’s dictatorship and rumors of the brutal murder of an Anglican Archbishop, Voice of Uganda published a comic strip of Ekanya that depicted the figure Ekanya talking to a butcher about a human head (see cartoons). This led Amin’s government to imprison the managing director and editor-in-chief of the newspaper and Ekanya was suspended for some time. Tumusiime was forced into hiding for one month. In the early 1980s, Tumusiime moved to Kenya to pursue agricultural economics. There, he started running the comic strip Bogi Benda in the Daily Nation. In 1986, after achieving acclaim for Bogi Benda throughout East Africa, Tumusiime returned to Uganda. There, he went on to establish publishing and media houses that have made him a pillar in the East African publishing world.

  • Tumusiime, James. What makes Africans laugh? : Reflections of an entrepreneur in humour, media, and culture. Kampala, Uganda: Fountain Publishers, 2013.
  • Tumusiime, James. Bogi Benda. Nairobi, Kenya: Stellascope Pub. Co., 1985.