KAMPALA – President Yoweri Museveni has attributed Uganda’s good performance at the 2020 Olympics in Japan to peace enjoyed by the country and free education ushered in by the NRM government.
“Someone was saying it was a miracle for Uganda to perform well at the Olympics. This was not a miracle. The sportsmen are coming out spontaneously by themselves but it is because there is peace,” the president said while receiving Uganda’s Olympics team at Kololo independence grounds.
“Where it is not a miracle is that all this potential is there and has always been there. Why had it not come out before? One thing that was missing was peace. In the past, the people of Bukwo couldn’t showcase their talent because of being at the border with Kenya and were being raided by Pokot in Kenya and Karimojong.”
The President said by investing in peace and security of the country, government is indirectly supporting the flourishing of other sectors like sports.
According to President Museveni who is also the NRM national chairman, by providing free education under Universal Primary Education, government has enabled many sportsmen attain education and here , there talent has been spotted.
The President also spoke about the low cost techniques like encouraging sportsmen to join the country’s forces like Police, UPDF and Prisons as some of the other factors contributing to the country’s good performance at the Olympics.
“I told these people that anyone with sports potential should be recruited in the police and the army so that they have a base like a small salary to allow them to train. That’s why many of the medalists are from the armed forces. It is a low cost plan on how to maintain and encourage our sports people without using too much money. They get small salary from police or the army,” he said.
At the function, the president gave cars to each of the three Ugandan medalists at the Olympics games in Tokyo including Joshua Cheptegei, Jacob Kiplimo and Peruth Chemutai whereas he also promised to build houses for each of their parents.
President Museveni also directed the implementation of his earlier directive of giving a monthly salary of shs5 million, shs3 million and shs1 million to gold, silver and bronze medalists in international and continental sports events.
Uganda won a total of four Medals including two golds, one Silver and a bronze.