SOCCER governing body FUFA has reportedly offered broadcasting rights of the Uganda Premier League (UPL) to Azam Television
By Samson Opus
SOCCER governing body FUFA has reportedly offered broadcasting rights of the Uganda Premier League (UPL) to Azam Television.
According to inside sources, the Tanzania based company will offer $2.5m (about sh6.8bn) in a three-and-half year period.
“This is a very lucrative offer compared to the SuperSport deal. We could not let it go because clubs are in dire need. We are only working out a way of disengaging from SuperSport to avoid legal implications,” the source told New Vision yesterday.
If completed, the new deal will be a timely relief for the cashstrapped clubs in the top flight league. Days to Christmas, Express FC chairman Francis Ntalazi was among the club officials that were praying for sponsorship support in 2015.
“Definitely we are badly off. But we are hopeful that the Azam deal will go through,” he said, adding, “lack of funding demotivates players. With TV on board, we should be able to get other sponsors.”
When FUFA Vice President in charge of the UPL Dennis Mbidde was contacted yesterday, he could neither confirm nor deny the deal.
“As of now all that I know is that we have a very good offer on the table which we are still considering,” he stated.
“As clubs, we are free to take on anything because we have got nothing from SuperSport,” he added.
When Mbidde was pressed further on the breakdown of the offer, he remained cagey.
“Negotiations are still going on. We shall disclose everything as soon as they are finalised,” he said.
The development comes after the initial $5m (sh14b) five year deal with SuperSport stalled barely after taking off in the 2010/2011 season.
The SuperSport offer of $1m (sh2.7b) per season fronze after FUFA revoked organising rights of running the league from the Uganda Super League (USL) during the Lawrence Mulindwa regime.
However, USL director Kavuma Kabenge, who negotiated the SuperSport sponsorship deal, rubbished the purported new deal as inconsequential.
“As far as we are concerned, there are no more TV rights on sale. The pay TV rights were already sold to SuperSport,” he said.
“The obligations of FUFA are very clear. We shall hold them accountable to their obligations,” added Kabenge.
Azam TV offers sh6.8bn for UPL rights