Match officials in spotlight as Bright Stars denied a first win

Monday October 7 2019

At Lugogo, Bright Stars more than matched

At Lugogo, Bright Stars more than matched reigning champions KCCA and should have left with all three points had it not been for a disallowed goal. Courtesy photo 


On a match-day that produced 21 goals in eight games, there was as much attention on the goals scored as there was on the match officials in the Uganda Premier League.

Referee George Olem applied the drop ball rule incorrectly to allow Express score the fifth goal in a 5-3 win over Police before Saturday’s action produced even more drama.

At Lugogo, Bright Stars more than matched reigning champions KCCA and should have left with all three points had it not been for a disallowed goal. Ronald Ssempala appeared to give Bright Stars a 33rd minute lead from a header which was initially awarded by the otherwise well positioned centre referee Emmanuel Kiwewa.

But repeated communication from fourth official Ronald Madanda to assistants Isa Masembe and Hakim Mulindwa saw the former signal for a goal kick with belief that Sempala’s header had gone wide.

This followed KCCA goalkeeper Charles Lukwago’s attempts to claw the ball away from the net that resulted into ball hitting the post and going through a hole in the net as defender Samuel Kato attempted to retrieve it for restart.

“It is frustrating when such calls keep going against you,” Bright Stars’ Ian Mutenda stated while also citing a call that went against his side in the game against Vipers.


Joseph Janjali eventually gave Bright another lead from Alfred Onek’s cross before substitute Stephen Serwada diverted Mustafa Kizza’s freekick for the KCCA equaliser.

The result left Bright Stars third from bottom and the only winless side with four points from seven games.
KCCA are meanwhile winless in four games in all competitions with seven points from four games.

“For me that was not a goal, and that is why the referees did not count it,” KCCA manager Mike Mutebi said of the controversial incident while also acknowledging the opposition’s organisation.

In Kitende, the Vipers-Proline game was delayed for more than 35 minutes with referees assessor Amin Bbosa insisting Edirisa Lubega and Mahad Kakooza be taken off the Proline lineup for lack of licenses.

The pair have however previously featured for Proline in the league.
When play eventually started, Fahad Bayo scored against his former side, heading the decisive goal from a Paul Willa cross.

The result improved Vipers who are the only unbeaten side to 11 points from five games.
They are one point below third placed SC Villa who drew 1- 1away to Bsupga Busoga United in the Saturday lunchtime kickoff.

Onduparaka lead the table with 15 points from six games, two points ahead of Bul following a 1-0 win over Maroons.

UPL Results
KCCA 1 - 1 Bright Stars
URA 1 - 1 BUL
Busoga United 1 - 1 SC Villa
Maroons 0 - 1 Onduparaka
Tooro United 0 - 2 Kyetume
Vipers 1 - 0 Proline
Wakiso Giants 2 - 1 Mbarara City