UGANDA was yesterday kicked out of the continent’s top competition — the Africa Nations Netball Cup in Dar es Salaam because of a local federation feud that has split the sport into two
By David Namunyala
NETBALL has become the first victim of an international ban resulting from persistent administrative wrangles in Ugandan sports.
Uganda was yesterday kicked out of the continent’s top competition — the Africa Nations Netball Cup in Dar es Salaam because of a local federation feud that has split the sport into two.
A UNF executive that was relieved of its duties by NCS appealed to the Africa and world body against what they described as external interference. UNF is currently being run by an interim committee appointed by NCS.
World body IFNA and the Africa Netball Association yesterday informed the Ugandan team that they don’t deal with interim bodies.
The bombshell came as the She Cranes were warming for matches against Botswana and Malawi.
The Ugandans later learnt that the petition was filed by former UNF vice president Fred Mugerwa.
The ruling was made on Tuesday night by International Federation of Netball Associations Director in charge of Africa Joan Smith.
Uganda yesterday anxiously waited for four hours before they could play their first game that was never to be.
“Your former executive has let you, the girls and your country down,” Africa Netball Association Secretary General Alvira Peterson told the heartbroken She Cranes.
Team manager Fatia Kitaka described the decision as unfortunate because they were not given a fair hearing.
“We were not given an opportunity to state our case. We were just ambushed by the decision,” said UNF normalization committee spokesman Johnson Were.
Uganda, who are All Africa Games champions, wanted to use the ongoing competition as a springboard to the game’s pinnacle. Top finishers in this competition qualify for the World Cup.
Other bodies in danger of being banned too
This comes as a clear warning to other Ugandan sports bodies like the Uganda Olympic Committee, boxing, football and table tennis that are currently rocked by wrangles.
Uganda will not send boxers to the London 2012 Olympics for almost similar reasons. Squabbles in the Olympic body have also left everyone wondering how serious the country’s preparations are for the Summer Games.
The She Cranes have as a result of the ban, cut short their trip and now return to Kampala tomorrow.
“They have done all they could to make sure we don’t take part. We have no reason to stay its better we bring our sadness back home as early as possible,” said a crestfallen Kitaka.
Uganda banned from World events due to power struggles