By Samuel Sanya
AS days pass by, more information unravels.
Uganda Olympic Committee (UOC) president William Blick has revealed to New Vision the existence of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Russia Olympic Committee.
Blick said the 4-year deal signed during the London 2012 Olympic Games, has guarantees that the Russians will supply equipment and technical assistance for the Aquatic Centre project.
“The MOU will last till the next Olympics. There are 3 or 4 beneficiary federations and swimming is the one of them,” Blick explained in an interview.
“The Russians will provide technical assistance in form of coaching and equipment for the Aquatic Centre.
“We have designated between 7 and 8 acres within Kampala for the project.
“It is up to UOC and Uganda Swimming Federation (USF) to look for funds for the project.”
He said that the Aquatic Centre is part of plans for a high performance centre for athletes in all Olympic disciplines in Uganda.
Internet surveys indicate that aquatic centres cost between $2.5m (sh6.25b).
Facilities like the London aquatic centre go for as much as $450m (sh1.1 trillion).
An official from the Russian embassy in Uganda clarified that the project is too big for the foreign affairs budget.
Blick added that there is separate deal with the German Olympic Committee to develop short term strategic development plans for swimmers.
This will be done through a collaboration with USF.
The federation has entered into a partnership with sports marketing firm — Kinetic Management Group to speed up fundraising initiatives for all its projects this year.
Meanwhile, Uganda has lined up 50 swimmers ahead of the CANA Zone 3&4 Championship.
The sh350m competition will be held at Kampala Parent’s School, April 24-27.
Cost estimates have risen from sh250m a year ago and so far, 14 countries out of 25 expected at the event, have confirmed their participation.
Plans for the competition are already in top gear.