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President Museveni hosts Uganda Cranes to State Banquet, clears 2017 AFCON Qualification bonuses

The President of the Republic of Uganda, His Excellency Gen. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni on Thursday afternoon hosted the National team, Uganda Cranes to a state banquet at Entebbe State House.

The President was appreciating the Uganda Cranes for flying the country’s flag high after qualification to the 2017 AFCON Finals in Gabon. Uganda beat Comoros 1-0 on 4th September at Namboole to return to the Finals for the first time in 38 years.

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The luncheon was attended by First Lady Hon. Janet Museveni who is also the Minister of Sports and Education, State minister for Sports Hon Charles Bakkabulindi, State minister for Higher Education John Chrysestom Muyingo, Minister for Kampala Affairs Betty Kamya, FUFA President Eng. Moses Magogo, FUFA Executive members,Secretariat staff and Uganda Cranes players.

It was the first time The President was meeting the Uganda Cranes players after beating Comoros.

The President was in a jovial mood dropping light jokes about sports in his speech.

‘I am a very good footballer. I have a lot of stamina gathered from my days of cattle keeping. You know cattle keepers move a lot and are always fit’ said the President and he sent his guests into laughter.

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President Museveni during his speech

On Cranes success, the President congratulated the players.

‘Let me congratulate upon taking the country back to the AFCON finals. I know FUFA President Magogo has challenges with raising finances for the players but we can work out something together for the team’ added the President.

The President promised to clear the 2017 AFCON qualification bonuses for players and technical team as was requested by FUFA in the 3bn shillings budget presented to him before Uganda Cranes played Comoros.

Museveni also promised to fund the training programme for the 2017 AFCON Finals. Details will be worked on between the two parties FUFA, Ministry of Education and Sports as well as State House.

As he concluded his speech the President also noted the disparity in allowances and bonuses paid to other countries as highlighted by the FUFA President in his speech.

‘I have listened to the FUFA President Magogo talking about the allowances and bonuses paid to the Zambia National team and other countries. We shall match those figures. In fact i will meet the First Lady to work about a bonus scheme that should match that of Zambia added the President.

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During his speech, the FUFA President Eng. Moses Magogo highlighted to HE the role football plays in uniting the populace and also being a big foreign exchange  earner. Magogo also thanked the President for his great support towards the Cranes.

‘We do appreciate the financial and moral support you have given to the Uganda Cranes every time we have approached you for help. You have never let us down. The players who are here are always committed to representing the country at international level. However we have challenges especially in regard to the remuneration of the players and technical team including the huge salary paid to the Cranes coach every month’ said Magogo.

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First Lady Janet Kataha Museveni

The First Lady Janet Museveni was excited to receive the Uganda Cranes at State House.

‘We are very happy as we welcome you at State House. We witnessed great scenes of joy and excitement on 4th September. You made very many people happy on that day. we are proud of you’ said the First Lady.

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President Museveni juggles the ball at State House, Entebbe

The President later juggled a ball as he showed his fitness levels and skills on the beautiful game of football.

Uganda Cranes’ official sponsors Airtel Uganda Limited were represented by the managing director, Anwar Soussa.

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Soussa who was accompanied by the head marketing and communications, Remmy Kisakye thanked the Government;

We are extremely proud to be part of the Uganda Cranes.We joined the Uganda Cranes team at a time many were doubting the potential.

The players are shinning stars of Uganda on and off the playing ground. I thank the Government and His Excellency,  President Museveni for all the support

Meanwhile, the team later trained at St Mary’s College, Kisubi, a session that was also attended by U.S based Mike Azira.

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The Uganda Cranes players in training at Kisubi on Thursday

Highlights

  • 2017 AFCON Finals Qualification bonus to be cleared by the HE The President of the Republic of Uganda Gen Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.
  • The President will fund the training Programme for 2017 AFCON Finals.
  • Details on the above point will be worked on between the two parties FUFA, Ministry of Education and Sports as well as State House. 
  • Promised to make sure the allowances and bonus scheme for Uganda Cranes players matches those offered to the Zambia National team

 

 

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