Friday 17 August 2012

Uganda Parliament holds special session to honour Olympic gold medalist

Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni with the team which participated in Olympics games

Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- The Ugandan parliament on Thursday held a special session in honor of Stephen Kiprotich, the country's sole gold medalist at the recently concluded London Olympics.

During the session, government promised to pay a monthly allowance to athletes representing Uganda in continental and international events.Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi was grateful to Kiprotich who was in attendance for making Uganda's anthem the most memorable at the end of the Olympics. Finance minister Maria Kiwanuka stated that government will administer all the tax burdens that Kiprotich would bear.

Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga also lauded Kiprotich for ending the long drought of gold medals and called upon the Ministry of Education and Sports to budget well for sports so that talent can be developed well. Kadaga hoped that the high altitude training center as promised by the country's President Yoweri Museveni will be implemented. The legislators promised to collect money which they would give to Kiprotich as a gift. The 23-year old Kiprotich won the Olympic marathon title. Uganda last won gold in 1972 in Munich when Akii Bua won the 400m hurdles race.

Meanwhile,Uganda will late this year host the Confederation of East and Central Africa (Cecafa) Senior Challenge Cup, a top football official confirmed on Thursday.

Rogers Mulindwa, the spokesman of the country's football governing body Federation of Uganda Football Association (FUFA) told Xinhua that the country will host the tournament that brings together national football teams in the region. "We are ready to host this big event and Ugandans are looking forward to having this event here," he said noting that they have received a go-ahead from government.

The Cecafa secretariat last month announced that the event will be moved from Kenya to Uganda.The tournament that has been hosted by Tanzanian Football Federation for the last two years will this time be held in the Ugandan capital Kampala in late November to mid December. FUFA Chief Executive Officer Edgar Watson said they had finalized all the consultations and a confirmation letter sent to the regional secretariat. Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup is sponsored by East African Breweries Limited through its Tusker brand. The FUFA Executive has named a 10-man local organizing committee to start the preparations of hosting the oldest football championship in East and Central Africa. (Xinhua)

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