Makindye West member of parliament, Allan Ssewanyana will be contesting for the Presidency of Federation of Uganda Football Association (FUFA) at the forthcoming general assembly.
Flanked by his lawyer Allan Mulindwa who is also a Sports Lawyer, Ssewanyana made the announcement on Monday morning at a press conference held at his office in Makindye where said Uganda’s football needs nothing but an accountable leader with no history of criminal conviction.
The position is currently occupied by the Budiope East MP elect, Eng Moses Magogo who has held it for two terms since his first election in 2013. He has already declared vying for the third term in the August 2021 elections.
“I am presenting myself as a candidate for the position of FUFA President at the next general assembly. We must make football an enjoyable environment for every stakeholder including players, investors, coaches, sponsors, media and fans,” says Ssewanyana.
In 2017, the lawmaker who also doubles as the shadow sports minister petitioned the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) to investigate allegations that Moses Magogo had illegally resold 2014 World Cup tickets.
“Magogo entered a Plea bargain under Article 67 par.1 of the FIFA Code of Ethics statutes, this means that he pleaded guilty and entered a deal with FIFA for the purposes of obtaining a lenient sentence from FIFA. He was fined Ugx 37,000,000 (CHF 10,000) and was banned from taking part in any kind of football related activities at National and International level for two months,” said Ssewanyana.
While serving the sentence, his vice president, Justus Mugisha took over as interim president at FUFA.
It should be remembered that at the time, Ssewanyana also petitioned the Minister of Education and Sports, Janet Museveni, who then ordered the Inspector General of Government to investigate Moses Magogo for re-sale of tickets since in Uganda the re-sale of tickets constitutes a criminal offence.
Ssewanyana argued that the alleged actions by Eng Moses Magogo were corrupt and amounted to abuse of office since FUFA is both a private and public institution.
He says however, that despite police recording his statement in presence of my lawyer, nothing has so far been done.
“The least police would have done was to summon him and Edgar Watson (FUFA CEO) for statement recording in order to show accountability to the people of Uganda,” he notes.
“I have learnt with utmost disbelief about the intentions of Mr. Magogo to run for office again in August 2021 yet he knows clearly that he is a convict under the FIFA Code of Ethics statutes and served both sentence and fine respectively,” Ssewanyana adds.
Ssewanyana alleges that Magogo’s tenure prior to the conviction by FIFA was marred with allegations of corruption, administrative malpractices, unaccountability although he stated many times that he stood for core values of authenticity, integrity, unity and performance.
“Magogo has transitioned himself based on high minded self-promotional principles of integrity of the game including tolerance, fair play just as the game, sports management and transparency for which he has fallen short,” claims the youthful MP.
He told reporters that over the years, the National Council of Sports Regulations were not made to streamline registration, operations, structures and conduct of FUFA and other sports associations which created legal a lacuna and power strive in FUFA whose administration was inherited by Magogo in 2013.
“Government passed the regulations in 2014 which Mr. Magogos administration fought because they were harmonizing football and thus led to civil cases in courts of law over legality of the establishment of FUFA and its legal registration,” he says.
“Up to date Mr. Magogo as a leader has failed to stir FUFA ahead out of these turbulent legal battles because he represents his interests and not of those of the game and or FUFA,” he adds.
Ssewanyana adds that the system at FUFA is not transparent and that laws or statuses are only made to close out any possible challenges to presidency or accountability.
“Accountability is to report to those you are responsible to and for. Mr. magogo has not in any way reported to those he is responsible to such as Government, tax payers while at the same time the Footballers and Administrators have suffered same fate,” he says.
As such Ssewanyana wants Magogo to step down at the end of his term since “he is still under investigations by FIFA for violating ban imposed on him by FIFA” when he allegedly defied the ban by the world football governing body, by attending a match between Uganda and Malawi at the Mandela National Stadium.
He also wants FUFA to account for any money from government and FIFA whose accountability is under question by some football players and stakeholders.
“I have instructed my lawyers to file a case if accountability is not given within 7 days. Mr. Magogo has been tested and he has failed. Character protects power and we have seen the character of Magogo over time both in public and private as one not befitting a leader,” Ssewanyana says.
“Its time Uganda starts installing character into our leadership principles as a nation to have transparent and accountable leaders,” he adds.
In the previous two elections, Allan Ssewanyana, MP Muhammad Nsereko, Proline director Mujib Kasule and the outgoing Vision group CEO, Robert Kabushenga are among those who expressed interest in the position but would pull out on grounds that the exercise was not fair.
They alleged that the existing procedure that brings the FUFA president is a manipulated to lock out possible contenders for the position.
A person is required to have been in football administration for seven of the 10 years preceding an election if he is to stand for the position of FUFA President.
He or she must be nominated at least one of the eight Fufa regions. In addition, you need endorsements from a UPL club and a Special Interest Group.