African Games medallists shine among stars

The winners of the Real Stars awards joined by organisers and sponsors. PHOTO/GEORGE KATONGOLE 

What you need to know:

At the 2024 African Games in Ghana, Niyoyita, a Senior Four student, clinched three medals, including two silver and one bronze. 

The spotlight for the March ForteBet Real Stars monthly award fell on the medallists who excelled at the African Games in Ghana, overshadowing the stars that shone at home.

With four awards on offer, two teenagers; Hakim Mutebi and David Niyoyita were awarded as the best in football and weightlifting, respectively while the graceful Lydia Namabiro took to the podium for the first time winning it for rugby as Husinah Kobugabe continued her dominance in badminton.


No one could describe best what Niyoyita’s triumph means other than Jamil Buwembo, the head teacher of Kakungulu Memorial School. Buwembo picked the award for Niyoyita during a presentation breakfast at Lazo Restaurant in Kampala.

At the 2024 African Games in Ghana, Niyoyita, a Senior Four student, clinched three medals, including two silver and one bronze. 

Niyoyita had been nominated alongside schoolmate Lydia Nakidde, who also competed at the African Games.

Buwembo heaped praise on Niyoyita, who is away in Phuket City, Thailand for Olympic qualifiers.

“He had dropped out of school and we couldn’t trace his parents. He stays at school all the time. He’s so committed that sometimes he trains from the school compound,” Buwembo said of the youngster.

Niyoyita is currently competing at the 2024 International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) World Cup in Thailand.

Saving the best for last

Hakim Mutebi's star has been rising since he joined St Mary's SS Kitende in Senior Two. 

Rarely used last year as Kitende won the Secondary Schools (USSSA) trophy in Fort Portal City, Mutebi does not cease to impress. He would later in December star for the Hippos at the Cecafa U18 tournament emerging as the MVP.

The award came as a result of his influence as Uganda played at the finals of the African Games in Ghana. The SC Villa youngster came from the bench to score the winner in the crucial semi as Uganda came from down to beat Congo 4-2.

The excited youngster, who said: "I am happy to receive this award, it gives me the courage to work more, it has been the first in my career," Mutebi said.


Black Pearl Lydia Namabiro was named rugby's real star beating podium regular Peace Lekuru and 7s star Norbert Okeny to the award with a Shs500,000 cash prize.

Namabiro was lauded for her sensational performances for the Lady Rugby Cranes Sevens at the HSBC Challengers Series in Montevideo and the African Games.

She was a cog in the Lady Rugby Cranes team as they finished fourth at the HSBC Challengers Series and was instrumental as the team won gold at the African Games.

On her debut at the African Games, Namabiro scored six tries clinching the Woman of the Tournament award.

"I’m really happy to win this award. I also want to thank my teammates and the coach for their dedication and teamwork, which played a significant role in our success in Ghana," Namabiro said.

Elsewhere, Husinah Kobugabe won the award for badminton following her exploits in Ghana where she won doubles gold with Gladys Mbabazi. She also won silver in the women’s singles after losing to South Africa’s Johanita Scholtz.

ForteBet Real Stars

March winners

Football: Hakim Mutebi

Rugby: Lydia Namabiro

Weightlifting: David Niyoyita

Badminton: Husinah Kobugabe