today's Pick
Eritrean football team seeks asylum in Uganda
Publish Date: Dec 06, 2012
newvision
  • mail
  • img

The "missing" Eritrean national football team has applied for asylum in Uganda rather then return home, officials said on Wednesday.

"The 18 members have told us their country is not safe for them once they return and they want political asylum," Uganda's minister for refugees Musa Ecweru told AFP.

"They are in the hands of the Ugandan government and United Nations and we have given them protection," he added.

Ugandan police were alerted on Monday when the team members disappeared after losing to Rwanda 2-0 in a regional tournament, according to the Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations (CECAFA).

"We have instructed police to call off the search for them because these people are not a threat to Uganda, they say they want protection," Ecweru said.

If the players pass an eligibility test, they will be given refugee status, he added.

Thousands leave the Red Sea nation every month, according to the UN, fleeing conscription and a hardline government that jails critics in harsh desert labour camps, and is ranked worst in the world for press freedom.

In 2007, six national players sought asylum in Angola after a game there, while in 2009, 12 Eritrean national football players sought asylum after a game in Kenya.

Last year, 13 members of Eritrea's Red Sea football club sought asylum in Tanzania.

Eritrean officials did not respond to requests for comment.

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Police are on the hunt for a security guard in connection with burglary at the offices of (HRNJ-Uganda....
If I catch you in a lodge at lunchtime . . .
When ethics minister Fr. Lokodo called for the removal of condoms from Parliament, he met a lot of mixed responses....
Kony ‘suffering from diabetes, arthritis’
Seven recently-surrendered LRA rebels say Joseph Kony is aging and sickly, and that he is suffering from diabetes and arthritis....
City lawyer Kasango wanted by police
Still fresh from the Pension case scandal, city lawyer Bob Kasango has again found himself embroiled in another huge financial scandal and is currently being sought by police after he defrauded his client of money from the sale of her house in Kololo....
Mourdja's nose has been eaten away, like one lip and part of her upper gum, leaving the 13-year-old girl atrociously disfigured by noma, a disease that thrives on malnutrition....
IGG probes claims against UNRA
The Inspector General of Government is probing 76 claims of questionable conduct against the national roads authority....
Do you think Ugandan graduates are the worst in the region?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter