VINCENT Byarugaba is said to have been reluctant to take up Uganda Amateur Boxing Federationâ€™s(UABF)
By James Bakama
VINCENT Byarugaba is said to have been reluctant to take up Uganda Amateur Boxing Federationâ€™s(UABF)top job the day strongman David Agong was ousted.
Byarugaba was reportedly jilted by the calibre of people that wanted change.
According to the outgoing executive, where Byraugaba was a vice chairman, the newcomers were a bunch of failures out to fleece the already limping UABF.
But the new team quickly realised its image weakness and hastily embarked on a campaign to woo Byarugaba to its side as a way of gaining credibility. Byarugaba was hesitant but finally yielded after hours of â€œpeace talks.â€
UABF is today barely halfway its term, but I am sure Byarugaba, a disciplinarian, must be regretting why he did not go by his first instinct.
In boxing terms, UABF has since the election been struck by stinging public relations uppercuts- the latest, which had secretary Issa Odongkara arrested on claims of forgery, resulting in a devastating knock-out.
That Byarugaba was still reeling from an Odongkara outburst that had the â€œhonourableâ€ secretary punching Lukanga Boxing Club owner Sam Lukanga, highlights the crisis in the federation.
UABFâ€™s link with scandal can be called cordial if you consider an earlier case where boxer Charles Kizza was arrested for trafficking fake dollars at the Atlanta Olympics.
Itâ€™s still too early to convict Odongakara. But if it turns out that he actually was involved in forging American visa stamps, then the federation could be in some serious trouble.
Questions to be asked could include how many other similar cases Odongkara engaged in? The microscope could then turn to the other officials. Are they innocent?
Let me hope UABF has not been prostituted to levels similar to those of other Ugandan sports bodies that today canâ€™t send teams to Japan and USA because of their forgery record.
Byarugaba should also quickly take full control. His Kasese base seems to be a recipe for mismanagement of the Lugogo headquarters by his Kampala-based juniors.
My advice: He should call an immediate extra ordinary assembly and rid the federation of thugs.
Itâ€™s time Byarugaba salvaged UABF