Norbert Mao

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Norbert Mao
Born (1967-03-12) 12 March 1967 (age 48)
Residence Gulu, Uganda
Nationality Ugandan
Ethnicity Acholi
Citizenship Uganda
Alma mater Makerere University
Law Development Centre
(Diploma in Legal Practice)
Yale University
(International Fellowship)
Occupation Lawyer & Politician
Years active 1996 — present
Known for Politics
Home town Gulu
Religion Roman Catholic

Norbert Mao is a Ugandan politician and lawyer. He has been President of the Democratic Party since 2010,[1] and he is the Local Council 5 (LC5) Chairman for Gulu District.

Early life and education[edit]

Norbert Mao was born on 12 March 1967. His father was Acholi and his mother was a Munyankole. He attended Mwiri Primary School, in Jinja, and briefly went to Wairaka College, in Jinja District, before attending Namilyango College, a prestigious all-boys boarding high school in Mukono District, from 1982 until 1988. He then attended Makerere University between 1988 until 1991, graduating with a law degree LLB. He served as the president of the Makerere University Students Guild between 1990 and 1991. He went on to obtain the Diploma in Legal Practice from the Law Development Center in 1992. In 2003, Mao was admitted to Yale University, under that university's World Fellows Program, where he spent one year at the New Haven, Connecticut campus.


From 1992 until 1994, Norbert Mao worked as an Associate Attorney in the offices of Kabugo and Co. Advocates, a Kampala-based law firm. Between 1994 and 1996, he worked as Legal Counsel of the Legal Aid Project of the Uganda Law Society, in their Gulu office. In 1996 he was elected to the Ugandan Parliament, representing Gulu Municipality. While in parliament, he served on the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee and on the Public Accounts Committee. He resigned from Parliament in 2006 and was elected Chairman of Gulu District.

Mao is chairman of the East African chapter of the Parliamentary Network on the World Bank (PNoWB) and member of its Secretariat.[2] Also, he helped found the Great Lakes Parliamentary Forum on Peace (AMANI Forum). He was instrumental in trying to bridge the gap between the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels and the Ugandan government by lobbying for the passage of a general amnesty law aimed at bringing a peaceful resolution to armed conflict in Northern Uganda.[3][4]

He belongs to the Democratic Party and publicly indicated his intention to contest the 2011 Ugandan presidential elections, either as the nominee of his party or if not nominated on the party ticket, as an independent.[5] He was elected as President of the Democratic Party on 20 February 2010 and ran for President of Uganda in the 2011 general election. The DP faced a lot of challenges that led to a split and deep polarization at the height of the election. He attracted only a small share of the vote, and President Yoweri Museveni was elected to another term. Norbert Mao and Inter Party Coalition presidential candidates Kizza Besigy and Olara Otunu, among others, protested the election results in spite of its early approval by international observers and the US as largely free and fair.[6]

Personal details[edit]

Norbert Mao is married to Naomi, and they have two sons. Mao speaks Luo, Luganda, Runyankole and English fluently.[7]


External links[edit]

Preceded by
John Ssebaana Kizito
President of the Democratic Party
2010 - Present
Succeeded by