KAMPALA – National sports associations have accused their supervisory body – the National Council of Sports –NCS of impartiality in the disbursement of funds – requesting Parliament to intervene.
Representatives of the different sports federations – while meeting the Committee of Education and Sports on Tuesday said NCS allocates funds to associations of their choice and desire – and in amounts whose criteria was a mystery.
“You cannot say that this sports association deserves Ugx5m and another deserves pea nut. Why do you want to give funds secretly?
“The way NCS is distributing sports money is very poor,” said Jjagwe Robert – the president, Uganda Table Tennis Association.
He added that the associations have overtime demanded for guidelines on distribution of funds but the criteria had remained a top secret on the side of NCS administrative managers.
“We have often proposed that NCS develops clear funding guidelines known to all its affiliates such that each one of us knows how much we ought to receive annually,” said Jjagwe, who together with heads other sports associations were making submissions on the two sports bills before the committee.
Whereas the Federation of Uganda Football Associations – Fufa boss – Moses Magogo –also MP, Budiope East County tabled the Physical Activity and Sports Bill, 2022, the Ministry of Education and Sports presented the National Sports Bill, 2021.
Sam Mahaba Muwonge – the president, Uganda Cycling Association asked the committee to consider increasing funding to the sector – saying that sports personalities were struggles during international tournaments.
“We propose that government funds sports from preparations, travel and purchase of equipment. We find challenges importing the modern sports equipment necessary for us to compete favourably on international level,” said Muwonge, who asked for tax reduction on sports equipment as a way of enabling more people to participate in the sector.
Parliament was also urged to allocate funds for operations of the sports associations and federations said to be currently run by volunteers.
“If you want us to execute the mandate of the sports sector to the level desired by the country – finance the secretariats,” said Jjagwe.
The committee members expressed concern with the quality of sports despite – what they termed as government’s increased funding – tasking the sports associations to come up with a robust strategy to grow the sector.
“Why is it that some time back the Federation of Uganda Football Association used to perform well with little funding? Why are we not getting results with more funding? Don’t we have good players,” wondered Brenda Nabukenya – the Luwero district Woman MP.
The Older Persons’ Representative for Western Uganda, Joram Tiibasimwa said there was a need for the sports associations to look into other opportunities of funding other than government, which he said might never satisfy the needs of each federation.
“As far I can see – in this country, government cannot manage supporting sports organisations to the desired level. We need to look at other alternatives, for example what can we do to attract commercial enterprises to finance sports activities?” advised Tibasiimwa.