The late Hon. Fr. Simon Lokodo was born on October 28th1957 at Narengepak to Look John Apanakol and Aryong Elizabeth. He was baptized at Kaabong Catholic Church.
Fr Simon Lokodo, Started His Primary in Jinja, in 1968 until 1970, when he returned to Kaabong to continue his primary educational Komunkuny Boys.
While at Komukuny Boys, Fr Simon remained deeply involved Church activities. He developed values, served as altar boy, which later inspired to join the Seminary. He joined the junior seminary and in 1973 he attained a Primary Leaving Examination at Nadiket Seminary Moroto. He joined the minor seminary where he attained the East African Certificate of Education at Nadiket Seminary Moroto in 1977. While in the Junior and minor seminary he was a very jolly seminarian who loved music, football and volleyball a that tender age.
In 1980 to 1982 he studied in Alokolum National Major Seminary- Gulu where he attained Diploma in Philosophy and Social Sciences. In 1983 he studied Italian and French languages in Rom–e and attained certificates in both. In 1984 he attained a certificate in German language in Rome-Italy as well. Rev. Fr. Simon Lokodo was a multiliguist; he spoke Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, German, French, English, Ngakarimojong and Luo. His Italian accent was more and the elderly. He is known for having supported the ﬁrst football team in Kaabong called Teltel, when he was given a Landcruiser with Zebra tarpline, he later renamed the team Zebras since they could use this pick up for travels along Karamoja and outside. He also supported the formation of Holy Cross Catholic Choir that continued to perform well in the Diocese and beyond. While a parish priest he also sponsored many students under Solidale for example daughter of his brother Auma Rose, Nakwang daughter of the late Casimiro Napak, Loluk Fedelis, Fr. Samuel Lotuk, Hon. Komol Joseph Miidi and many many others. He organized a fund raising drive for Cardinal Nsubuga Nursery School which was built to completion and supported with a school bus as well.
From 1991-1995 he was a member of Governors for Uganda Martyrs University Nkozi representing Moroto-Diocese at the same time he was In Charge of Lay Apostolate- Moroto Diocese, he was as well the Chairman Hospital Management Committee Kaabong Hospital, The Chairman Investment Committee Karenga Sub County, He was also the Chairman School Management Committee Loyoro Napore Pimary School. When Kotido Diocese was granted a Diocesan status was appointed as the ﬁrst Coordinator for Social Services and Development in Kotido Diocese. He later went back for further studies in 1993 he studied and attained a Diploma in Rural Sociology Urban University Rome-Italy in 1994 he studied and attained Diploma in Social Communication and from 1994-1996 where he attained Masters in Biblical for the same Urban University Rome-Italy. In a short time Hon.Fr. Simon Lokodo was able to attained 3 Certiﬁcates, 3 Diplomas, 1 Bacholars and 1 Masters while in Rome-Italy. From 1997 -2000 he was a Bible Translator (Translating Bible into Ngakarimojong) at Kangole Catechist Training Center-Moroto Diocese. He also supported Kangole Parish on pastoral issues. From 2000-2006 He was made the Parish Priest of Karenga Catholic Parish-Kotido Diocese.
From 2006-2011 at the death of Member of Parliament for Dodoth County, during the bye-elections, the people begged him to contest as a uniting factor to the people who had become divided due to political Associations (Ngidoso vs Ngiporein). He was a suitable and neutral candidate that everyone elected on the NRM ticket. He continued to serve as an Ordinary Member of Parliament at the same time performing his priestly duties; he was also supporting the Chaplain at Parliament to celebrate mass. From 2009-2011 he was appointed a junior minister for Trade Industry and cooperatives. He received a call from the Catholic Church requesting him to choose between political ministry and the priestly ministry, since he could not be both, this was the toughest moment in his life when he was rained with a lot of temptations, he opted to serve as a politician. Pope Benedict XVI defrocked him. He was suspended from exercising active priesthood. “Though suspended from the exercise of his priestly roles due to joining politics, he never absconded from Sunday Masses. He even got permission to receive Holy Communion. Religiously he remained a staunch Catholic. He and I always attended 10:00 O clock English Mass at Christ the King Kampala”. Fr. Jacinto Ogwal. As a junior minister for Trade Industry and Cooperatives he also started investing in some personal business such as building of residentials at Seeta and some rentals. From 2008-2009 he was elected the Vice Chairman Parliamentary Committee on Government Assurances.
From 2011-2021, he was re-elected as Member of Parliament for Dodoth West County. At the same time he was appointed and elevated a Minister of State for Ethics and Integrity (Ofﬁce of The president). From 2011-2021 he was elected the Chairman Inter Agency Forum (Coordinating government efforts in the ﬁght against corruption. From 2013-2021 he was appointed Executive member of (IAACA) International Authorities Against Corruption Association representing Africa. From 2011-2015 he was elected the Chairman National Resistance Movement (NRM) Kaabong District. At this he served and defended the moral integrity of Uganda and fought a number of vices such as Homosexuality rights, LGTBI rights, Ponography and Immoral dances. He did this having the Catholic morals in mind. In the statement of his friend Fr.Jacinto Ogwal „ Fr. Simon was very friendly and social. We became close friends up to his demise today.Politically we differed in ideology. Simon was a rightist and a liberal Capitalist while I am social democrat. He was one of those who were sent to me to convince me join NRM offering me some cabinet docket. I declined due to my ideological conviction. But we remained friends. He left behind quite an investment.
In 2021 he lost MP seat for Dodoth West County and he was also dropped as a Minister of state for Ethics and Integrity. He was then appointed a member of the Uganda Human Rights Commission (UHRC) based on his records on Human rights. This is a position he served till his demise while on duty in Geneva-Switzwerland when Uganda was undergoing Human Rights Review. He is served by so many dependents: children of his brothers and sister, friends and many vulnerable people in Karamoja and Uganda at large.
“ he has been described by many who worked closely with him as an icon for morality and integrity”
Most of policies and lows to promote integrity like whistle blowers protection acts leadership code of conducts anti-phonography were spear headed by him. He passed on when he was member of human rights commission
We will remember him for his insistence to what he opted to do even when the Catholic Church did not want him to join politics. He continued to uphold the Catholic Church morals as a minster of ethics and integrity; he hated homosexuality and LGBTI rights and the activists who wanted it legalized in Uganda, He proposed the sanctions against mini- skits and he insisted on punishing celebrities who exposed their bodies, he insisted on policing the Nyege Nyege festivals to weed “immorality out of activities at the arts and cultural celebrations. He promoted positive cultural values; this was exhibited when he attended the Karamoja Cultural Event 2018 Kaabong Chapter when he insisted on elimination of forced and early marriages, forceful eleopment, Female genital mutilation, and inserbordination of women.
In short he was a priest, politician, Rightist, and moralists.
We shall miss him dearly, May Almighty God through his death raise good Political leaders, good religious leaders and good cultural leaders for Karamoja and Uganda at large.
May his soul rest in eternal perfect peace! Amen.
On Saturday 05th February 2022, the body will arrive at Entebbe Airport at 04:40am, followed by vigil at the deceased’s home in Seeta at 06:00pm.
There will be a Requiem Mass at Christ the King Church on Monday 07th February 2022 starting at 02:00pm.
On 08th February 2022, there will be a Joint North Karamoja Council Session at Kapedo, Karenga District starting at 09:00am, followed by burial at 05:00pm.
Informed are: Relatives, Friends and In-laws.
MAY HIS SOUL REST IN ETERNAL PEACE