• July 6, 2020

Basketball: Uganda Hosting Zone Five Hangs In Balance

 Basketball: Uganda Hosting Zone Five Hangs In Balance

According to the initial schedule, Uganda will host the FIBA Africa Zone Five Basketball Qualifiers set in June 26.

However, the Federation has hinted that the inadequate government funding may force them to throw away the hosting rights.

This may come as a huge blow which will see the Country fined and banned from participating in International Basketball engagements for more than two years.

In the recent quota, National Council of Sports has reduced FUBA’s funding from Sh220M to Sh110M, despite the Federation being among the top six prioritised.

Reports suggest that NCS cut the budget and channeled some of the money to Woodball Federation that recently held a Woodball World Cup in Entebbe.

FUBA’s General Manager National team committee Hajji Mohammed Santur revealed that of the Sh110M received, 60% will go to the Junior teams (U16 boys and girls) that is set to participate in Rwanda in the Zone five qualifiers. This, will leave FUBA with a limited budget to host the two international events.

Speaking during the presser held at Lugogo, Santur added:

“It’s a big year in Ugandan Basketball that is highlighted by the upcoming AfroBasket and Afrocan qualifiers which will be hosted, but we are set to miss this once in a lifetime opportunity because of inadequate funds from Government.

“We had planned to bring some professionals from abroad to boost our squad so as we can complete better on home soil but all this may not come to fruition if Government doesn’t come to help.”

FUBA is expected to meet with NCS officials next week to see the way forward. It should be noted that Uganda has recently registered enormous success in Basketball, including the National Women’s team participating in FIBA 3X3 World Cup.

Countries expected to arrive in Uganda for the big event include Burundi, Ethiopia, Egypt, Eritrea, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan and Tanzania.

Uganda will target to take a top spot to qualify for the 2019 AfroBasket and Afrocan Championships.

The women category will also act as a first step to qualify for the women’s basketball tournament at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.

The last time Uganda hosted the Zone Five National Championship was in September 21 to September 28 2014. The side also hosted the Zone five club championship in 2017.

Brian Kawalya

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