What you need to know:
- Assurance. State Minister For Sports Obua rallied the corporates to offer more, pledged to ensure the ovals are available and assured visiting nations that their security will be a priority of the state.
After a series of postponements due to varying circumstances, there will be no more waiting. State Minister for Sports Hon. Denis Hamson Obua flanked by Uganda Cricket Association (UCA) finally launched the International Cricket Council (ICC) Cricket World Cup (CWC) Challenge League B. The City of Kampala will be the host for the six-nation event involving; Bermuda, Hong Kong, Italy, Jersey, Kenya and Uganda from June 14-28 at Lugogo Cricket Ground and Kyambogo University Oval with the lakeside Entebbe Oval reserved.
Such is the meticulous preparation that the UCA Local Organising Committee (LOC) led by Paul Kaheru has been doing behind the scenes and forthwith received applause from Hon. Obua, who also offered special praise to Speke Resort Munyonyo – the official tournament hotel and host of yesterday’s official tournament launch.
“This is a celebration of sports,” Hon. Obua eloquently started his speech.
“The last two or three years have not been very good for sports all over the world. But wherever there is a dark cloud, there is always a silver lining. There was a dark cloud of Covid-19 but there was also a silver-lining at that very difficult time from respective sporting disciplines, cricket inclusive, that lifted the Uganda flag higher than ever before and it is important to salute the leadership and respective teams.
“Cricket’s rankings speak volumes about Uganda’s potential as we are fourth in Africa behind South Africa, Zimbabwe and Namibia. We would like to conquer Africa first before we conquer the whole world. That is the dream.
“This tournament gives us a chance to conquer, again, on home soil.”
Hon. Obua went biblical to make a plea to the corporate world and also offer assurance to the cricket fraternity that the state will ensure security is provided and the grounds are free from any other activity.
“My primary reason of coming here is to deliver the message of government to the corporate sponsors. But before it is delivered, join me in thanking Speke Resort Munyonyo, Uganda Tourism Board, Roke Telkom, Kansai Plascon.
“These four are so far the corporate sponsors who are walking alongside Uganda in providing sponsorship to UCA, who have stable and mention worthy leadership amongst the 51 sports disciplines.
“Your role in making sports in Uganda better than ever before is recognised by government. This is the way to go. Afterall, the bible says in the book of the Acts of the Apostles Chapter 20:35; ‘There is more blessings in giving than receiving.’
“That is my message to the four corporate sponsors today. You have received more blessings from UCA than they have from receiving from you. This must be spirit. To the prospective corporate partners out there, UCA have demonstrated resilience, capacity, stamina and impetus in doing the right things. People used to ask about Idi Amin when you travel out of Uganda but now they now ask about sporting teams and individuals who have lifted our flag high.
“There is no better time than now to come on board and support. I am also hopeful that our budget will be increased because the best advocacy is success which has been achieved.
“Cricket will certainly receive more because you’re on our radar. Keep the candle burning,” added Obua to the applause of the full gallery in Meera Hall.
The minister urged other federations to borrow a leaf from cricket on how to run a sporting federation and also cleared the air on the availability of the grounds. “I am directing National Council of Sports to ensure the respective grounds are availed to UCA as requested. I will also be directly involved in the security of the teams and visitors to the country. Security is beyond government; it is a matter of the state. I will ensure the concerned systems are alerted.”
NCS Assistant General Secretary – Technical David Katende Ssemakula, Roke Telkom Brand Manager Amanya Atuhaire, Plascon’s Daniel Kayongo, UCA Chairman Michael Nuwagaba plus two beauty queens graced the occasion.
Paul Kaheru (Chairman), Martin Ondeko (Tournament Coordinator), Rita Tinka (Hospitality), Arthur Nuwagaba (Accommodation), Benjamin Musoke (Human Resource), Julius Makubuya (Grounds), Denis Buwembo (Medical), Rokani Sylvester (Security), Joshua Mwanja (Transport), Kenneth Mulondo (Accreditation), Richard Okia (Liaison), Denis Musali (Media & Communications)
Event: ICC Cricket World Cup Challenge League B
When: June 14-28
Where: Kampala, Uganda
Venues: Lugogo & Kyambogo Teams: 6
Partners: Plascon, UTB, Roke Telkom, Speke Resort Munyonyo