FUFA has on Saturday held a successful consultative meeting with captains/ representatives of clubs featuring in the Uganda Premier League and FUFA Big League.
The meeting chaired by FUFA President, Eng. Moses Magogo was hinged on a number of issues including player development, personal branding, importance of players having intermediaries and the proposed FUFA Competition reforms.
The President in his opening remarks indicated players are key stakeholders of the game and ought to make their contribution for football to develop.
‘We appreciate the role you play as players that make the football product but you must understand your role, the environment around in order to get a better product. It’s more than the football you are playing.’
He stated that players must work on their brands as individuals in order to sell a good image to the public.
‘Professionalism is about self-branding. As players, you must make some sacrifices to become unique. The musicians do it in the way they dress and appear in public. Have we as players looked in that direction? Probably we need to guide where necessary but it must start with you.’
About intermediaries, the President advised players to have authorized people to help negotiate contracts with clubs on their behalf.
‘A player at this moment must have an intermediary to make negotiations on your behalf. Your focus must be on delivering on pitch and assign other people to do the contract negotiations.’ He said.
In the same meeting, the President revealed that FUFA has already received a letter from Government asking players to make a contribution to the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) and Pay As You Earn (PAYE).
‘The Government has officially written to us regarding NSSF and taxation for the players’ earnings. As law abiding citizens, definitely we must pay taxes but it is also important for players to save with NSSF. If we are talking about professionalism, these are some of the things we must embrace.’
It is by law that employees pay 5% of their total monthly wages and their respective employers top up with 10% of employees’ total cash remuneration. Every member therefore saves 15% of their total monthly remuneration with NSSF.
Players who attended the meeting lauded FUFA for the arrangement and believe some of the things discussed will help them in making better decisions.
Paul Mucureezi who represented Vipers SC stated he learnt the importance of having an intermediary.
‘It was an eye opener to us. Many of the players have a bad perception about football agents but today, we got to learn the importance of the intermediaries because not many of us fully understand the details of contracts.’
KCCA FC captain Charles Lukwago appreciated the sensitization about playing while saving in order to care for life after retirement.
‘Saving with NSSF helps us a lot because you are guaranteed of something after retirement. At KCCA FC, we already have this arrangement and it is important that for now it spreads across the entire league.’
Jimmy Kulaba, the BUL FC captain lauded FUFA for such a timely innervation and reaching out to players.
‘As players, we have always been left behind but this meeting is a foundation of better things to come. The issues we discussed are very important and they promised that the same arrangement will be spread to all the players.’
‘Personally, I have been lucky to play at clubs like BUL FC, URA FC and Police FC that have saving arrangement. Definitely it will help players develop the culture of saving so that we don’t suffer after retirement.’
Bernard Muwanga, a defender at Bright Stars FC tasked FUFA to make sure clubs pay players.
‘As players, we want to improve our standards of living but many of us operate under tough conditions. Some clubs fulfill their obligation and this is where we call for FUFA’s intervention.’
FUFA Deputy CEO- Football, Decolas Kizza revealed that this programme will be extended to each club so that all the players benefit.
‘We want all the players to benefit from this message. FUFA will make arrangements with every club so that every player is catered for.’
Players/ Captains that attended
1-Okello Silvester (Maroons FC)
2-Kulaba Jimmy (BUL FC)
3-Paul Mucureezi (Vipers SC)
4-Charles Lukwago (KCCA FC)
5-Waswa Emma (Sc Villa)
6-Osikol Isaac (MYDA FC)
7-Ssenyonjo Hassan (Wakiso Giants FC)
8-Kalanda Frank (Express FC)
9-Muwanga Bernard (Bright Stars FC)
10-Kabuye Bashir (Police FC)
11-Buwembo Ronald (Kigezi Homboyz FC)
Also in attendance:
Fred Tamale – (Delegate Uganda Football Players’ Association)
FUFA 2nd Vice President- Darius Mugoye
Exco Members -Chris Kalibbala
Hamid Juma – FUFA EXCO Member/ Chairman Competitions Committeee
FUFA Secretariat – Deputy CEO-Football Decolas Kiiza
Competitions Director – Hajjati Aisha Nalule.