First-time writer tells struggles of young graduates

Saturday July 10 2021
End of the Road

'End of the Road' by Herbert Kafeero. PHOTO | COURTESY


End of the Road, by first-time Uganda writer Herbert Kafeero, speaks of the struggles of young people in Uganda but might as well be about all young people on the continent.

Kafeero’s fictional characters are desperate to make it in life yet society has almost nothing to give. It is a life of survival.

The issue of a youth bulge has been described as a time bomb, but every young person has a personal story of unemployment and broken dreams.

The central character in the book, Omare finds himself with a ''useless'' university degree like many young and educated Ugandans, and is now entering another level of education the ''school of hard knocks,'' where ''real life lessons'' await.

Omare navigates through life fumbling and stumbling, and ends up being diagnosed with an incurable disease adding to his original struggle — unemployment. With simplicity, pace and depth, Kafeero demonstrates the cycle that young and fresh graduates go through, in an environment that is not ready for them.

The book also fervently demonstrates the success that many young people end up achieving by default rather than a designed structure to help them realise their potential.


The author explores the theme of illegal migration and seeking manual job across where exploitation is the norm.

The book is a decent attempt but the editor’s did not do justice to it by mixing British and American English thus causing confusion with some terms.

End of the Road speaks to the social ills and the weight on the shoulders of young people.

It also speaks to HIV/Aids three decades after the disease was discovered.