KAMPALA – President Yoweri Museveni has admitted that the government of Uganda has not invested enough in Uganda Sports because there are other sectors that need extra attention and help.
“When Uganda began recovering, we started sports again. Government has not committed to supporting the national team seriously, but we have been doing it in a small way because we are dealing with other pressing issues like; security, education, health, roads, piped water, electricity, ICT,” Mr Museveni admitted.
The President, however, revealed that this small push is already bringing very good results to the country.
Mr. Museveni imagined saying “when we start supporting it more, imagine what our sportsmen/women can do?”
He said that the Uganda Cranes team represented the country so well in the on-going AFCON that are taking place in Egypt.
“I welcomed the National Soccer Team- The Cranes, from Egypt where they represented us so well. Making it to the last 16 out of the 53 countries is a commendable job,” he commended the team.
The head of state further said that through sports, Ugandans can unite as it brings them together.
“Because of their entertaining value, games bring unity. It’s not good for people to bring partisan politics in games, if you see anyone doing it, you know they are unserious. Drunkards enjoy games, thieves suspend stealing for 90 minutes. Games are good therapy for society,” he said.
The President also urged youths to prepare for their old age so that they don’t suffer in the future.
“However, in Runyankore, we say, “Buto ekorera bukuru”; literally meaning one should work for their old age when still young. So, our sports people must prepare well so that they don’t live miserable in old age”, he said.
Mr. Museveni added saying “Our sports people from the past have not lived a good adult life. I ask the players to remain disciplined they should avoid alcohol and womanizing”.
He said that he is very happy that the Cranes went up to the last 16 adding that he is confident that Uganda will perform better next time.
He promised to organize 1m dollars with the government to distribute it among the players and officials. However, the officials will not get as much as the players.
“Although we didn’t win all our fixtures, we made a good effort and achieved some reasonable success. I don’t know how Senegal got that goal. I see our players are all fit young people. All they need is more stamina,” he added.