Why Uganda’s football is at its worst now  

Mr Immanuel Ben Misagga is a football investor and businessman.

What you need to know:

  • Football is supposed to be promoted from the bottom and not the top.

There was a recent viral picture and a cartoon published by this publication on social media where Fufa president Moses Magogo and guests that included  Ms Anita Among, the Speaker of Parliament, overshadowed the triumphant national women’s team that had just won the Cecafa tournament.
 The images may have drawn a picture that all is well in the country’s football. 
 On the contrary, the game is enduring one of its worst spells in history with The Cranes in disarray while domestic football is dying.

 In the past few months, Speaker Among has graced several Fufa-organised events where she has donated handsomely, which should be able to reflect in the performance of the discipline, but has in many instances been seen as the Fufa president’s efforts and not the Speaker’s.
 Last week, Mr Magogo – who is also the Budiope East Member of Parliament - announced that it was his efforts that the sports budget increased from Shs18 billion to Shs40 billion in the next financial year because he managed to lobby and convince the House. Wasn’t there a team effort in this?

 Unfortunately, I have not seen him take the Speaker around to see grassroots football, which is where most funding is needed. Would it be to Fufa’s disadvantage if the Speaker and the world got to know the deficiencies in local football? We may hide this, but not for long; and it has started reflecting in the national team. 
 He may have a grip on the Fufa delegates and executive but the day the people on the ground decide to have their voice, all those delegates will be voted out.
Football is supposed to be promoted from the bottom and not the top as Mr Magogo may have led the Speaker and others to believe.
From my experience, the game provides immense opportunities to not only unite a community but also provide means of survival and inclusion in government projects.

At the moment, the country is embracing the Parish Development Model but Fufa leadership has never mentioned how football can tap into the Shs100m every parish in the country is going to get. 
Instead, they present fictitious ambitions of hosting the 2017 Afcon well knowing we lack the capacity. 
Such wishful thinking is done on purpose to seek more funding, which will be diverted into hosting meaningless workshops for officials to pick per diem.
Government has an obligation to promote football from the grassroots but people, who promote paychecks at the expense of taking the game to the people, are thwarting those efforts. 

There are a number of football investors like Dr Lawrence Mulindwa that the government can use to extend and entrench the game. It is not too late to engage them to fulfill the obligation.

The author, Mr Immanuel Ben Misagga is a football investor and businessman.


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