Government authorities have all opined and pronounced that FUFA Ltd is an illegal entity in football matters
By Betty Amamukirori
When the Uganda Cranes ended a 38-year-old curse by beating Comoros to qualify for the African Cup of Nations, a Pandora's Box of accusations against the Federation of Uganda Football Association (FUFA) Limited and its president immediately opened.
First was national coach, Micho Sredojevic, who revealed to the country that he has been working for seven months without being paid by FUFA. This has been followed by allegations by the Cranes players that Moses Magogo has backtracked on his promise to reward each of them with sh34m upon beating Comoros.
However, as FUFA Ltd is still grappling with these accusations, the registered trustees of FUFA, which is under the stewardship of Daniel Walusimbi, has gone to court, accusing it of illegally managing national football and passing off as a national association.
According to the suit, FUFA Ltd was incorporated as a company and therefore, cannot manage national football as per the National Council of Sports (NCS) 2014 Regulations.
The suit has been filed against FUFA Ltd, Lawrence Mulindwa, Jasper Aligawesa and Kyeyago Kaggwa who are directors of the association, Magogo and Edgar Watson, the Chief Executive Officer.
As a response to the suit, the Civil Court registrar, Alex Ajiji, has given them 15 days to respond to the accusations raised by Walusimbi's FUFA.
In the suit, the football association stated that prior to its registration in 2014 under the Trustees Incorporation Act, it was founded in 1924 and affiliated to FIFA in 1959 and since then, it has been administering football in Uganda under the supervision of National Council of Sports with a binding constitution and delegates.
It stated that in 2005, FUFA Ltd which was incorporated in 2000 by the late Godfrey Kisekka and Denis Obua was disbanded by the Minister of Education and Sports and a normalization committee was formed to run football for eight months until elections were held and Mulindwa was elected president.
The trustees of FUFA, Chris Rwanika, Moses Embuga and Hassan Mutasa said that in 2009 FUFA Ltd changed its name to Nkwanga Constructions and Supplies Ltd but within the same year, Mulindwa, Aligawesa and Kaggwa incorporated FUFA Ltd as guarantors.
"After incorporation it purported to administer and manage football in Uganda under the pretext that they were the legal arm of the plaintiff (FUFA) which caused confusion in public as to whom between the plaintiff and defendant was mandated to administer football," reads part of the suit.
FUFA contends that even when government authorities such as the Solicitor General, NCS and Accountant General have all opined and pronounced that FUFA Ltd is an illegal entity in football matters, it has not heeded to the advice.
The association trustees stated that the Constitutional Court also issued orders on August 28, 2013, stopping NCS and other government organs from recognizing or dealing with FUFA Ltd as the national football association until the regulations under NCS are made.
When NCS made the regulations in April, Regulation 4 (4) barred the registration of incorporated companies such as FUFA Ltd, as national associations.
The suit filed through Mulindwa & Athiang Advocates, claims that despite all the opinions and regulations in place, Magogo and his co-accused have continued to act in total disregard.
The association states that as a result of their illegal operations, it has lost endorsement deals, sponsorship deals, financial earnings, time and money.
It now wants court to declare that the conduct of the accused amounts to passing off and holding out as a national association whereas not.
It also wants court to issue a permanent injunction against Magogo and his accomplices, restraining them from passing off and holding out as a national association.