By the closure of acceptance for nominations for Fufa presidential elections on Thursday evening, only three candidates had their candidature accepted by returning officer Patrick Okanya at Fufa offices in Mengo.
This is shocking given that by Wednesday, eleven aspirants had declared intentions to contest in the polls meant to replace outgoing president Lawrence Mulindwa who declared that he won’t seek re-election for a third four year term.
Of the eleven, only FUFA Vice president in charge of administration Moses Magogo, Kampala Central MP Muhammad Nsereko and former first son Taban Amin had their candidature accepted on return of nomination forms.
In addition to the above, Vision Group CEO Robert Kabushenga, Sports analyst Mark Ssali, Sports journalist and Makindye Division Councilor Allan Ssewanyana, Headmasters Justus Mugisha (Standard High Zzana) and Jeff Sserunjogi (St. Juliana SS), Kiira Young FC Chairman Jimmy Lukwago, Mukono delegate Joseph Mwanje, former Fufa lawyer Muhammad Bazirengedde and Michael Okiror.
Most of them were locked out by the law as article 9 (3) of the FUFA constitution which states that:
“For any person to be eligible for the candidature of the Executive Committee Member of a FUFA member, he/she will have served in one or a combination of any of the following positions for a total of at least seven years in the last ten years”
a) Exec Committee member of FUFA
b) Member of FUFA standing committee
c) FUFA accredited admin instructor
d) Delegate to FUFA assembly
e) CEO/GS of FUFA
f) Executive member of CECAFA, CAF, FIFA
g) Standing committee member of CECAFA, CAF, FIFA
h) Member of Executive Committee of a FUFA registered Football Club.
Kabushenga and some others (Mark Ssali, Allan Ssewanyana, Michael Okiror), felt undone by the law and so never showed up to present nomination papers. Kabushenga went on to announce on Twitter: “The rules have locked me out of the FUFA Presidency.”
For Allan Ssewanyana, he posted on his facebook timeline in Luganda “tebinagwa…..ngenda kulangirira ekidako saawa yona. Amateeka amakakali ago” translated as “It’s not done yet, I will be informing you what next anytime. The rules are difficult”.
For Mugisha, he stepped down for Magogo at the last minute following advice from Lawrence Mulindwa in a move meant to strengthen the current executive’s stranglehold onto power.
As for Serunjogi, The Observer reports that he pulled out due to what he termed as a confused atmosphere in which he was unsure of the outcome and repercussions.
“At the moment, much as I would like to serve Ugandan football at the top, the whole process is shrouded in mystery and uncertainty and I cannot be sure of what will be of FUFA tomorrow,” he told The Observer.
Sserunjogi’s concern comes with yet to be confirmed reports that the government through the Ministry of Education and Sports is set to disband FUFA and institute an eight man normalization committee before election date (August 31) citing illegality issues.
If the status quo stays as it is now, Moses Magogo is set to emerge victorious with a landslide victory given his opponents in the race are less known entities in circles of football.