By Online Reporter
President Yoweri Museveni has handed the national flag to Uganda Olympic captain Ganzi Mugalu and urged him and the team to be confident when representing the country in London.
"Dont panick. When you panick you make mistakes," said Museveni at the send-off function at State House Entebbe Friday evening.
He encouraged athletes to conserve their energy for the track, and not engage in what he called "ungazetted activities".
"Conserve your energy and unleash it on the track," he advised. "If you are disciplined you will find yourself running like a deer."
He then hailed the athletics federation for taking athletes for high-altitude training in Kapchorwa, which he observed will benefit them when they compete at low altitude.
But with only 3 athletes around for the function, the president expressed his concern about the ratio of officials to athletes. He asked, " Will we say the president has flagged off a team of officials?" The three were captain Mugalu, Annete Negesa and paralympic athlete Christine Akullo.
Athletics chief Dominic Otuchet then explained that all the athletes were in camp in Kapchorwa and could not travel in time to attend. " I am relieved that it is not only officials going to London," Museveni then said.
The Uganda team leave this weekend for the London 2012 Olympics that start a week from now.
The team to the Summer Games comprises 12 athletes, two swimmers, one badminton player and weightlifter. Two athletes will attend the Para-Olympics.
They are Moses Ndiema Kipsiro (5,000m, 10,000m), Annet Negesa (800m), Dorcus Inzikuru (3,000m steeplechase), Janet Achola (1,500m), and Jane Suuto (Marathon).
The others are Stephen Kiprotich (Marathon), Jacob Araptany (3000m steeplechase), Geoffrey Kusuro (5,000m), Abraham Kiplimo (5,000m), Julius Mutekanga (800m), Thomas Ayeko (10,000m) Benjamin Kiplagat and Dorcus Inzikuru (3,000m). Swimmers are Jamila Lunkuse (Women) and Ganzi Mugula (Men) , then weightlifter Charles Ssekyaya and badminton player Edwin Ekiring.
The Uganda Olympic team are sponsored by Umeme, British Airways, Vision Group and Stanbic. Board members and officials from their headquarters attended the send-off ceremony.
PAST MEDAL WINNERS AT OLYMPICS
Silver Eridadi Mukwanga
1968 Mexico Boxing Men’s bantamweight
Bronze Leo Rwabwogo
1968 Mexico Boxing Men’s flyweight
Gold John Akii-Bua
1972 Munich Athletics Men’s 400 metre hurdles
Silver Leo Rwabwogo
1972 Munich Boxing Men’s flyweight
Silver John Mugabi
1980 Moscow Boxing Men’s welterweight
Bronze Davis Kamoga
1996 Atlanta Athletics Men’s 400 metres
Medals by Games
Games Gold Silver Bronze Total
1956 Melbourne 0 0 0 0
1960 Rome 0 0 0 0
1964 Tokyo 0 0 0 0
1968 Mexico City 0 1 1 2
1972 Munich 1 1 0 2
1976 Montreal did not participate
1980 Moscow 0 1 0 1
1984 Los Angeles 0 0 0 0
1988 Seoul 0 0 0 0
1992 Barcelona 0 0 0 0
1996 Atlanta 0 0 1 1
2000 Sydney 0 0 0 0
2004 Athens 0 0 0 0
2008 Beijing 0 0 0 0
Total 1 3 2 6