We have always been told to follow our dreams and to do the things that we love most, for in there we could find utmost happiness and a peace of mind. CPA Charles Lutimba, a graduate teacher and certified public accountant shares his story on the journey of becoming and being an Accountant.
In his 4th year as a teacher, CPA Charles Lutimba was promoted to a Director of Studies (DOS) and Head of Economics Department. This exposed him as he continuously researched about topics related to budgeting, money and banking, national income, public finance which he later gained interests. It was at this stage that he decided to opt out of the teaching profession and take on a more profession based career. He had initially hoped to do an MBA but later realized that it was too demanding due to his schedule. He then embarked on trying to figure out his next line of career, he recalls visiting a training school at Carol House along Bombo Road in 2007, where CPA was among the options they presented him, he notes that a number of the topics on the syllabus were related to Economics and because of its affordable costs, he registered for the CPA course immediately.
After his drastic decision to switch to the accountancy profession, he vividly recalls that determination pushed him beyond the existing limits;
“when I did my first sitting, I was the best student in financial accounting, I then decided to do all the five papers in the second sitting, and passed them all unlike my other comrades!” – CPA Charles Lutimba Narrates
With only one exemption, he managed to complete the course in only 2 and half years. CPA Charles Lutimba’s first role as a professional Accountant was an Auditor. He later served as a Senior Auditor and is currently a Senior Technical Officer at the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Uganda (ICPAU).
Unlike other young people that look to work for the best and biggest companies in the country, CPA Lutimba is all about personal development. His part time work is motivational speaking and personal development because his passion for teaching has never died.
“Every time I talk to people, I encourage myself not to hunt for the best paying job but to have a long sustainable living. I may not yearn to work for the best, but to see myself develop as an individual,” Lutimba commented.
In good faith, Lutimba always advises people to do CPA citing its benefits to the individual and the opportunities that come with it.
The future of the course is very bright. I always encourage people to do the CPA course and to become members because it exposes you to a knowledgeable professional network and expands one’s chances of working with the top organizations in Uganda and beyond, automatically not forgetting the avenues of personal empowerment, self actualization and having an ever wanting attitude to learn something new as accountancy evolves overtime.
He reiterates that; “At this pivotal moment, when the nation is promoting local content, let all those who are proud of this country’s independence join the struggle against neo-colonialism by helping this nation spare its meager Forex by way of cutting on education tourism.”
His advice to the CPA students is to continue working hard and remain well- behaved as the profession bestows trust to individuals with good manners. He strongly urges students to desist from inappropriate behavior like misuse of information technology. This he asserts may impute intolerable conduct that may result into professional isolation. He keeps saying that “it is HARD to fail a CPA paper for the first time, but very easy to do so for the second, third, fourth and so on times. However, irrespective of the number of times one fails a particular paper, what matters most is recognition of the fact that such setbacks are simply a setup for a comeback”
And for ICPAU members, he urges them to take the lead as others strive for back seats, “live more; gain more happiness for yourself and those around you, let acting in public interest be a common denominator for all of us, in the end when we look back to each one of our lives, it must be worth watching.”
Lutimba holds a CPA qualification, a Masters in Business Administration (MBA), Post graduate Diploma in Tax and Revenue Administration (PODITRA), Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education and he is currently pursuing a Law degree at Makerere University.
As the Institute celebrates its journey of 25 years, with a mission to develop and promote the accountancy profession in Uganda and beyond; it has come from far to achieving this mission. Members, like CPA Lutimba all have different stories to tell, but one common thing is that CPA changed their lives.