Yash Tandon is an activist, author, policymaker, professor and political thinker from Uganda. He was involved in the democratic struggle against the dictatorship of Idi Amin in 1970. He has written several books and articles on topics related to African economy, politics, peace, security and international relations. He was born on 21 June 1939 in Kaberamaido, Uganda. He is fluent in English, Gujarati, Punjabi and Swahili. He graduated from the London School of Economics (1958-1961). He was a student of liberal economics. He discovered that economics is an ideology, and not a science as claimed by many. He was a lecturer at the Makerere University from 1964-1972, a visiting lecturer at the University of Dar es Salaam in 1968 and also at the National Institute of Public Administration in Lusaka, Zambia in the year 1972. After completing his education in London, he returned to Uganda. Upon Idi Amin’s advent of power, he sought exile in Kenya for three months. From there, he headed to the UK for nine months.
He worked relentlessly for a democratic change of the Amin rule. He was a member of the Interim Uganda Parliament (1979-1980), a founding member of the Uganda National Liberation Front, and involved in the May 1979 Moshi Conference aimed for the launch of the UNLF Government. He was among the founders of Alternatives to Neoliberalism in Southern Africa (ANSA) and the International South Group Network (ISGN) between the 1990s and 2000s. He returned to Uganda after Amin’s regime was over. He headed several parliamentary committees and contributed to the improvement of Uganda’s economy. He was a prominent member of many advisory committees and has been on the editorial board of some academic journals.
He was the founder of the Southern and Eastern African Trade Information and Negotiations Institute (SEATINI) in 1997. For five years, he was the Executive Director of the South Centre from 2005 to 2009, after which he retired. He now lives in Oxford, UK.