Uganda Today: Although news of granting the East African pioneer triumvirate, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania to host AFCON 2027 was received with enthusiasm in all the the three countries, in Uganda, seasoned controversial lawyer Male Mabirizi feels Uganda doesn’t deserve this accolade.
Accordingly he has petitioned the continent’s soccer governing body to strike out Uganda from the trio hosting countries. Here are some of his grounds among others.
1) Uganda is devoid of any democratic leadership. The sitting autocrat captured power in 1986 and has, since 1996, been organizing fake elections the latest 2021 where he announced 54 persons killed, internet completely shut down, forced disappearances were rampant and the results were not verifiable and when the case was filed in Court, his lawyer sat as Chief Justice and prevented the dissenting Judge from delivering her judgments.
2) A person who finds him/herself in Uganda is not assured of fair trial since civilians are dragged to military tribunals. Criminal & Civil courts mostly operate contrary to due process. On 15th February 2022, I was sentenced to serve 18 months imprisonment in absentia. My Appeal has never been heard.
3) Kampala Metropolitan area streets are highly militarized so that every about 25 meters there is an armed personnel. There’s no free movement amidst guns.
4) Freedom of Assembly is at whims of Police and Military. They have banned meetings of Forum for Democratic Change and National Unity Platform.
5) Corruption, Sectarianism and Nepotism, which are Crimes under Anti-Corruption Act, 2009 are normal. Minister of Education and Sports is Wife to the Ruler and her academic and other credentials are not available in Parliament.
6) The oldest stadium which was set up under NAKIVUBO WAR MEMORIAL TRUST ACT 1953 has since been sold off and 90% of it replaced with unlawful commercial structures by the regime operators who grabbed Stadium land.
7) MANDELA NATIONAL STADIUM was handed over to the military who unilaterally fenced off the stadium area pricincts including neighbouring people’s homes without compensation hence denying them access to their families, basic needs and treated them to degrading treatment.
8)The Federation of Uganda Football Associations [FUFA] leadership is not legitimate since practically, no elections have been held for the past 10 years. All potential candidates against sitting President, MOSES HASHIM MAGOGO, such as KASULE MUJIB have been disqualified on technicalities.
9) Corruption and Nepotism: Uganda government is run on corruption and nepotism exhibited by the president who has severally paid lip service to the corrupt, calling on the countries ombudsman to go slow on the corrupt because when they steal public funds they don’t take it abroad, but they invest it in hotels in the country. The president appointed his incompetent wife who lacks skills and academic qualifications to head the ministry of education that’s mandated to promote sports.
Mabirizi contends that because of the aforesaid, the government of his country won’t be able to put in place the required infrastructural facilities especially more stadia that are requisites for a country to host such a big tournament.
It’s on record, however that CAF, has granted hosting rights to some countries only to rescind their decision at the eleventh hour. It thus remains a contentious issue for Uganda, since the country currently has only two stadia fitting CAF standards to host AFCON.