18 February 2013

Uganda: Olympafrica Centre Handed Sh39 Million

The Olympafrica centre in Busia has got a U.S. $15,000 (sh39m) boost from the International Olympic Committee. Announcing the offer, Uganda Olympic Committee acting president William Blick said the money is aimed at provision of equipment for the center.

Located four kilometers to the border town, the center, opened in 2008, empowers youth through sports and commercial projects. The centre was on Saturday also renamed after its founder Maj. Gen. Francis Nyangweso who is a former Uganda Olympic Committee president.

"Besides this equipment, we shall also provide balls and sports training to schools in the neighbourhood," explained Blick.

Blick together with other UOC members, family members of the late Nyangweso and politicians were part of hundreds of people who turned up at the centre for a gala in memory of the General. Nyangweso, who held several high profile positions in government and sports, was also a long serving UOC president. He passed away in 2011.

State Minister for Karamoja Affairs Barbara Nekesa Oundo, area Member of Parliament Kevina Taaka and Sports Commissioner Omara Apita promised to support the project. "Much as outside support is great, we the locals should also be fully behind the project," insisted Nekesa as she contributed sh0.5m towards the centre.

Members of the Nyangweso family and sports administrators played against local administrators and coaches in football, rugby and volleyball matches. Primary school children competed in athletics, boxing, football and netball.

Boxing, a sport that at a higher level has been torn by wrangles, was one of the thrillers at the gala. The climax of the seven bout programme had 12 year old Umar Gichudu stopping Isma Bwarise with a three-punch combination in the third round.

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