Officials from the National Council of Sports had a tough time before the Education and Sports Committee of Parliament over the country’s dismal performance at the just concluded Rio Olympics games in Brazil.
The National Council of Sports General Secretary, Nicholas Muramagi, told the Committee that the delegation comprised 21 participants and 22 officials including the Sports State Minister Hon. Charles Bakkabulindi, a matter that elicited an angry reaction from Committee Chairperson, Hon. Connie Nakayenze Galiwango.
“The team of athletes was 21 and the technical team comprised of 22 technical people. Who can explain this?” asked Hon. Galiwango. “How can you take people who have gone for a shopping spree and pay them more allowances than the athletes?” Hon. Galiwango added, before demanding a proper explanation from the National Council of Sports.
Hon. Margaret Baba Diri (Koboko) wondered whether the team actually trained at all, saying such a performance cannot reflect a thorough prior preparation.
“I would like to know whether there was any preparatory training of the team rather than going with a Minister just to ashame the country,” said Hon. Baba Diri.
Committee Member, Hon. Joseph Ssewungu Gonzaga (Kalungu West) said no stone would be left unturned in finding out what exactly happened.
“It [poor performance] has brought a bad name to Uganda and as Parliament we are not going to keep quiet about this,” said Hon. Ssewungu, adding, “I am saying you [National Council of Sports] have just killed us.”
A list from National Council of Sports reported no single medal for team Uganda in the athletics, swimming and boxing categories in which they participated at the recent Olympics held in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.
Stephen Kiprotich, whose performance at the 2012 London Olympics earned Uganda her first gold medal in 40 years, did not put up any good performance either. He finished 14th in 2 hours, 13 minutes and 32 seconds, trailing Solomon Munyo Mutai who finished 8th in 2 hours, 11 minutes and 49 seconds.
The Committee is set to invite the Minister of State for Sports, who was also the head of the Ugandan delegation, Hon. Charles Bakkabulindi, for his explanation of what the Committee called ‘embarrassing performance’ at the Rio games.