The President of the Federation of Uganda Football Association Lawrence Mulindwa has praised the Uganda Cranes Initiative for the support they have extended to national soccer team.
“We commend the founders of Uganda Cranes Initiative for appreciating the challenges FUFA has been facing especially in regard to funding our national team by subsequently launching a cash drive through the UCI.”
Mulindwa made these remarks Monday while addressing the press at the end of year Press conference at FUFA Head offices in Mengo.
Uganda Cranes Initiative is an organization that was formed by a group of Ugandans who are passionate about the national soccer team. It was formed in the wake of Uganda’s failure to qualify for the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations.
UCI played a key role in the Cranes’ recent CECAFA triumph in which Uganda successfully defended the CECAFA trophy. the funds that facilitated the team during the tournament were as a result of a fundraising campaign launched by the initiative.
Mulindwa also promised to work with the initiative to develop the sport.
Below is the President’s full Press statement
Monday 31st December 2012
Members of the Press
Ladies and Gentlemen
I welcome you all to this End of the Year Press Conference and I hope we all had a wonderful Christmas. I thank God for helping us all complete 2012 peacefully and hope the New Year 2013 will be much better.
FUFA has registered achievements and challenges in 2012 which will guide our assignment in 2013. Below are some of the achievements:
1. Statutes amendment:
Ugandan FA President: Lawrence Mulindwa
With consultation and guidance from FIFA, CAF and CECAFA, we have been able to put in place a new FUFA amended constitution which was officially endorsed by the General Assembly on August 25th, 2012 at Pope Paul Memorial Hotel. The new statutes will help address any football related challenges that affected football in the past.
2. FUFA-Govt. relationship:
We have maintained a cordial working relationship with the central government throughout the year. We are grateful to the Minister of Education and sports Hon. Jessica Alupo, the State Minister for Sports Hon. Charles Bakabulindi and the National Council of Sports (NCS) among others, who have stood by our side
(2b) Uganda Olympic Committee
Despite the challenges within the Uganda Olympic Committee, FUFA has had a good working relationship in which a course for elite coaches that was held in Makerere University was secured under the Olympic solidarity arrangement.
3. CAF President’s visit:
We invited and hosted the CAF President, Dr. Issa Hayatou from November 23 to 25. We are optimistic that his three day visit to Uganda will bear fruits starting this coming New Year. During his visit, Hayatou was able to hold talks with the FUFA Executive Committee and met H.E the Vice President of Uganda, Edward Kiwanuka Sekandi among other activities.
4. FUFA Super League:
The amendment of the statutes of the top tier league created the ‘FUFA Super League’ which is on running with 16 clubs. The participating clubs instituted an independent board to manage it and it’s already operational. Their offices are located at Green Land Towers in Kampala City Centre. The 16 FUFA Super League clubs are now individually direct FUFA members.
5. CECAFA-Tusker Cup:
We successfully hosted the 36th edition of the CECAFA Senior Challenge Cup (CECAFA Tusker Cup 2012) and emerged champions after edging archrivals Kenya 2-1 in the finals. This was Uganda’s 13th CECAFA title since 1973 and the 4th win in the same competition since we assumed offices on 17th December 2005. Uganda produced the tournament’s top scorer (Robert Sentongo), best player (Brian Omony) and the best Goal Keeper (Hamza Muwonge).
6. Stand-by Generator
We conclude this year with a modern standby generator, fully installed at our headquarters in Mengo. The 70KV generator was a donation from our partners-National Insurance Corporation (NIC). We are grateful to them for this kind donation.
7. License Plus FIFA donation
FUFA has installed a fully connected automated player registration and licensing soft ware (‘License +) which will be fully operational starting the 2013/2014 season. This soft ware is the first of its kind in Africa and will simplify our operations in the players’ registration exercise. We are grateful to FIFA for facilitating this process
8. Cranes show against Zambia
Although Uganda failed to qualify for the AFCON 2013 finals due in South Africa early next year, the Cranes had a good performance against continental champions Zambia. The Cranes’ 1-0 victory in the normal time is partly the reason for our most recent 86th position in the FIFA Coca Cola rankings. Cranes is now a big brand which should be generously protected by all of us.
9. World Cup 2014 campaign
We wind up the year with 2 points from two matches so far played after forcing a crucial draw against Angola in Luanda and resisting a defeat against Senegal in Kampala. We are left with 4 matches, two of which are home engagements against Angola and Liberia. Cranes will play Liberia and Senegal away. The current table standing gives us equal opportunities to advance to the next stage.
10. CAF License ‘C’ Course:
We conducted a CAF License ‘C’ course for Super Division and a few FUFA Big League club coaches. This was a CAF requirement and out of the 39 participants, 28 obtained the required pass mark for the award of the CAF License C.
11. Youth Football:
The Hippos (U20) competitively participated in the CAF Africa U20 Championship ejecting Mozambique and losing narrowly to African Youth champions Ghana.
12. Competitions Committee
All Leagues in the country were successfully concluded within the stipulated time of 30th June. We successfully organized the Bell Uganda Cup and for the first time, we had the finals held out of Kampala in Pece Stadium, Gulu district.
The Club Licensing process was successfully undertaken and concluded putting Uganda among the few compliant member associations as per CAF requirement.
All the basic sets of rules have been formulated and approved ; namely: The Club Licensing Regulations; Rules on the Status and Transfer of Players; The FUFA Super League Rules and The FUFA Big League Rules.
13. Women football.
FUFA organized several women football activities across the country geared towards developing women football further. Liser Berg, a woman Technical Consultant from USA continues to help the federation promote football development. A course for female coaches was conducted in January with 38 participants.
Kawempe Muslim School won the girls overall football trophy at the East and Central Africa Secondary Schools Championships held in Burundi in August 2012.
14. Media Relations:
We have been able to hold our weekly press conferences throughout the year. We commend the members of the press for positive and timely reporting of FUFA/Football activities.
15. FUFA-Airtel Rising Stars
FUFA partnered with Airtel to hold the U-16 Airtel Rising stars tournament for boys and girls in all regions, with the finals taking place in Jinja.
16. Discovered new talent for national team
Several players featured for the Cranes in the WC/AFCON qualifiers, international friendlies and CECAFA and impressed our technical team. Some of the exceptional talent we discovered includes Godfrey Baba Kizito, Joseph Ochaya, Robert Sentongo, Saidi Kyeyune, Nicholas Wadada and Moses Oloya.
17. Beach Soccer:
FUFA in partnership with Uganda Beach Soccer Clubs Association successfully organized the first fully fledged beach soccer clubs League, corporate league, women tournament and the inter University competition.
18. MTN-FUFA inter region competition
With sponsorship from MTN, FUFA held a successful inter regional competition in Arua where Eastern emerged champions. FUFA appreciates the continued support from MTN and we are optimistic that this partnership will continue to tap new talents from the grassroot.
Key Challenges encountered:
Despite the enormous efforts put in to ensure qualification to Afcon 2013 finals, we narrowly failed to qualify. The limited funding of football activities was yet another leading challenge.
We commend the founders of Uganda Cranes Initiative for appreciating the challenges FUFA has been facing especially in regard to funding our national team by subsequently launching a cash drive through the UCI.
We thank UCI for all the support they extended to our victorious CECAFA team and we will continue to work hand in hand.
To all our sponsors, we are grateful for the support extended towards football activities in the country. MTN
I also wish to thank in a very special way the football fans in this country for the support showed throughout the year.
Our focus in 2013:
FUFA will be looking to consolidating our registered achievements in 2012 as we scale up new heights. The immediate targets include:
- Ensuring successful 2014 World Cup qualifiers by preparing Cranes well.
- Maintaining a good working relationship with FIFA, CAF, CECAFA, government and our sponsors.
- Organizing international friendly matches for our national team.
- Solicit sponsorship for the FUFA Super League, Big League, FUFA Regional leagues, beach soccer league, women league and other football activities.
- Implement the new constitution and finalize the process of creating new statutes for regional and lower levels.
- Assemble a competitive team of locally based players to participate in the CAF organized CHAN competition.
- Continue working towards unity among all stake holders for purposeful intentions related to football development.
- Conduct free and fair elections at all levels later in the New Year.
- Organize more courses in areas of refereeing, coaching youth coaching and administration among others.
- Promote and develop further women football.
- Engage the underage teams into preparatory matches.
- Keep up our supervisory role in all association football related matters.
- Maintain the culture of holding FUFA weekly press conferences for purposes of information dissemination and accountability.
- Strengthening the FUFA Secretariat by appointing Competitions Director, Commercial Director and Director Finance, among others.
- Further promote beach soccer.
The Year 2013 will require a continued collective effort from all stakeholders. Football must be put at the helm and we work towards its consolidation and development.
Those opposed to our leadership must start preparing for the elections due in 2013 other than wasting resources in useless court battles.
FUFA will continue to resist any selfish acts that contradict association football rules in this New Year. We will enforce the FUFA Constitution to the latter.
Happy New Year to you all.
“Together we can build the game.”