AMAZING: Uganda’s Blind Pastor With A ‘Vision’ Speaks Out


Pastor Opio Joseph Obale during the interview in his Wakiso residence PHOTO/PATRICK JARAMOGI


GAYAZA, Uganda [SHIFTMEDIA NEWS] For three decades, I am talking of 30 years, right from 1978 when he was born, until 2008, all seemed well, until KABOOM! Something struck.

This is the sad tale of a career gone ‘sour’ of Uganda’s Blind Pastor Opio Joseph Obale, the man with a ‘Vision.’

Born in a polygamous family in Masafu, Busia, in eastern Uganda, with 7 siblings, and scores of others from the 7 wives, his father, Wanyama Sepiria (RIP), had, all seemed well for this vibrant young man, start despite the hardships, embodied in growing in a polygamous homestead.

Education Background

Pastor Opio Joseph, now aged 45 hails some 120 miles east of Uganda’s capital Kampala, a few meters to the Kenyan border. He went to Busikho primary school, before heading to Bukedi College Kachonga for his O level (1993-1996). He then joined Jinja College for his A level between 1997- 1998.

In 1991, he enrolled for BA Education at Makerere University , coming out as a teacher of History and Economics. The son of a retired nurse from Masafu Hospital has also since done a Post Graduate Diploma in Higher Education

Disaster Strikes

When I hunted for him to conduct this interview, Opio, now a Lecturer of Theology at the All Nations Theological-College-and-Seminary, owned by the South Koreans, speaks with pomp. At the back of your mind, when you hear his voice over the phone, you shudder to assume he is blind. For 30 solid years, his vision was intact. ‘It was around 2008, while doing some work in Koboko, that I began sensing blurry images,’ he said during the interview at his residence in Wakiso. He said each day his vision got worse. ‘I went to Mengo Hospital , then Mulago Hospital where opticians did their best. I was operated more than twice,’ he explained. But despite these operations, the situation only got worse. He was then taken to the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centers (KCMC) in Tanzania, where further operations were conducted in vain.

‘It was here that doctors told me my eyes were about to blow up. I decided to repent all my sins and got saved. I gave my life to Jesus, since my future was now doomed,’ he said.

It is now 15 years since he last saw anything. Apparently, Opio had a traumatic accident sometime in Panyimur where he suffered brain nerve damage that led to cortical blindness.


 A Fresh Start

Feeling depressed, Opio returned to Uganda, where his wife he had met prior to getting blind had just given birth, to a bouncing baby girl, Lisa. Their first born is currently a pupil in Primary 7.

‘Upon returning, my relatives wanted me to return back to the village, I asked God for guidance,’ he explained with a huge sense of humor. Opio then went to All Nations Theological College and Seminary in Kawuku Bwerange and enrolled for a two year certificate in Theology.


Learning the Hard way

For two years, Opio grappled with his sight. ‘I didn’t want the Koreans to know that I was blind, fearing they would expel me. I gambled like this for two solid years, only to emerge the best student.’ He would seat attentively and listen while in class. He would then return to the dormitory while his other students went out for games. ‘When things begun getting tough, I opened up to one of my colleague in the room. I told him I was blind. He then onwards started supporting me especially guiding me when it was examinations time,’ Opio says he would ask his friend to read for him the question then guide him on the answer sheet where to write the answers. ‘My luck ran out when I was called to explain why my writing was crisscrossing the lines on the answer sheets. It is at this moment that I declared my blind status to the school authorities.’



Pastor Opio with his son during the interview

After the certificate, Opio did a Diploma where he emerged best student again and later joined the Westminster Abbey for a degree in Theology where he excelled again. The Korean Principal at the All Nations Theological College and Seminary approached him to start lecturing Theology immediately, ‘I started teaching in 2019, then lockdown came it and disorganized us, but resumed again when COVID-19 subsidized,’ he said. Most of his students are from Rwanda , Democratic_Republic_of_the_Congo, Tanzania, and Kenya. He says most Ugandans still don’t embrace the Theology teaching. ‘Someone just wakes up and says God has directed him to be a pastor, something that has led to mushrooming quark and fake pastors, who are after money and misleading their folks.’


At the College Opio, who also trains pastors across Uganda lectures doctrines of God, the Bible, Man, and the Church. Dubbed the Blind Pastor with a ‘Vision’, Opio is not about to give up. He feels his getting blind was Gods calling for him to serve his Ministry.

Since his love for transforming lives of Christians, especially pastors, who head churches took center stage, he has conducted pastoral outreach trainings in Kagadi, Fort-Portal, Mbale, and currently in Tororo, where he is training over 30 pastors.


Lisa Pastors first born now in P7 and her sibling Jersey currently in Primary one

‘The asset that God gave me is the memory. I have a super memory, once I listen to you once, that is all. I also been gifted to memorize phone numbers of many people. So I just tell my wife dial this number and we talk,’ says the father of two.

Challenges Faced

Being blind comes with enormous hardships. Opio’s only blessing is his wife, that he met after she dropped out of school in senior three. ‘I met my wife before I became blind. In 2008, shortly, after she conceived, I stopped seeing, though I know, using holy spirit how Lisa, my first born looks like, and Jersey, my son.’ Opio explains that hard times was when he had to visit the latrine.

‘since I was blind I would end up stepping on feaces littered in the floor. This was my worse time when I rented in Kyanja.’


Pastor Opio Obale with his son Jersey, and wife he intends to wed on June 17 2013 at Kyanja Church PHOTO/JARAMOGI PATRICK
Pastor Opio Obale with his son Jersey, and wife he intends to wed on June 17 2013 at Kyanja Church

The other worse encounter was when he boarded a taxi from Kawuku to Kampala. ‘As I boarded, I was touching the seats in the taxi, and accidently touched a lady’s breasts. What I received next was a very hot slap. The lady said these are men who pretend that they are blind and want to touch our boobs.’

When he reached the old taxi park, he asked someone to direct him to Kyanja taxi stage, but as he was being directed, he heard someone say ‘fasi fasi’, since he wouldn’t see, the next thing he heard was a BANG!, he was hit by the luggage the man was carrying landing him on ground. The huge fall also shattered his glasses.

‘When I left Kawuku, I was given shs20,000, so when I reached home I told my wife to pick some money for food from my shirt pocket. What she found was only shs2,000, the taxi guys had also fleeced me.’  Opio now says he tries so much not to let his surrounding know that he is blind, fearing to be fleeced. ‘Most of my neighbors don’t know that I am blind. I hold my wife’s hands as we walk, most think we are in love. I follow her footsteps as she talks to me telling me where to step ahead.’ ‘My wife also helps me in marking student’s coursework, typing notes for my students, reading my emails and all my Watsup messages.’

Opio says he has no secret to hide from his wife. ‘Those ladies out there who may try to send me love messages on my phone are read by my wife. She also is the one who withdraws any mobile money sent on my phone by well-wishers.’

The hardest challenge Pastor Opio is facing at the moment is transport. ‘Since moving using public means is tricky, I use a boda boda daily to Kawuku, he has to pick me from home, and pick me after my lessons and drops me back home. The little allowance that I get from my lecturing all ends up on boda boda,’ he said.

He also has challenges of paying rent, accessing fees for his two children, feeding and health care since the wife is a housewife seated at home.


Lady Luck Strikes

Through his good preaching skills, UBC approached him to be conducting a 15 min preaching on the Gospel Hype program hosted by Big Sam every Sunday starting at 10am. The maiden appearance was on Sunday April 16 2023. His appeal is for well-wishers, Christians to come to his rescue, to support carry out Gods work, wither by sponsoring the Gospel Show so he can get transport to UBC every Sunday, and to also support his family.


Wedding Bells

To be in line with Gods works, you must align your home. For this reason, Pastor Joseph Opio Obale will be introducing his wife, and mother of two on June 10 2023, in Mpigi and thereafter wed her on June 17 2023 at his Kyanja based Mountain Movers Church where he ministers every Sunday.




Shift Media News

Read Previous

ROASTED: National Council Of Sports Boss Ordered To Refund Shs100m In 7 Days

Read Next

EATING 2 DEATH: Experts Demand For A Nutrition Policy To Address Food Safety

Leave a Reply