Jinja. Uncertainty, fury and discomfort are brewing up among fervent football fans in Jinja District after claims that a section of Indian investors are chasing after the land that holds Kakindu community stadium.
Located at the heart of Jinja town, the stadium that currently houses two Uganda Premier League sides JMC and Bul, is undergoing renovation under the supervision of LC III chairman Mubarak Kirunda.
“In a bid to uplift sports in our region, we have so far invested Shs2bn in building the fans’ wing, seating basement and hope to renovate the entire stadium to the required Fufa and Caf standards.
“Along the way, we have received eviction notices from a group of Indians who claim they owned the facility before former President Idi Amin expelled them in 1978,” Kirunda disclosed to Daily Monitor yesterday.
Kirunda adds that the Indians under their umbrella body Registered Trust of Indian Recreation Club, owned the disputed facility between 1920 and1962 when Uganda got Independence but it was never renewed thereafter.
“We managed to secure a court injunction to go on with the construction of the entire stadium. There is an ongoing case on the same in court that has lagged on since 2010. We intend to resume construction after the swearing in ceremony in May,” Kirunda stressed.
According to Ibrahim Mubiru of JMC Fans Association, they intend mobilize football lovers in Jinja to fight for the existence of the stadium.
“Already there is possibility of getting another top flight league side next season if Jinja SS qualifies which implies that three Jinja teams may soon have no home base.
“From league games, schools to charity games, Kakindu stadium has been our hosting venue - free of charge,” Mubiru said.
Efforts to talk to any member of the Registered Trust of Indian Recreation Club were futile by press time. If the stadium is given away for the construction of an industry, it will have joined a host of playgrounds nationwide that have been eaten away by arcades and estates unabated.