Skip to the main content

Leaving Home and Coming to Canada

Leaving Uganda: “My Whole Life in 1972” - Umeeda Switlo

Time 1:12


Hi, my name is Umeeda Switlo. When I left Uganda my name was Umeeda Umedaly. I brought this suitcase with me so that you could share with me this time, almost forty years ago, over forty years ago, that I left Uganda. And it says Umeeda Umedaly and, and uh, where it was I was going, to Oregon, before I came to Canada. This is it. This is where my whole life was in 1972. And I also found with me this identification certificate from Uganda. And it says that, where I lived and my immigration file number and that I was a Uganda citizen. So it certifies I’m a Ugandan citizen, but within a few days, I was stateless. I also found with me, the blouse that I had leaving Uganda. Imagine that. After all these years, this funky, cool blouse from the sixties. I mean, early seventies. A very, very special time in my life.

Oral History 14.02.21USLU with Umeeda Switlo
Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

Click each image to see the full size photo.