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Missing Ugandan weightlifter arrested by Japanese police

The police in Japan have found a man who is believed to be the Ugandan weightlifter who went missing last week from his pre- Olympic training camp in Osaka Prefecture.

According to the Japanese police, Julius Ssekitoleko has been tracked down in Mie Prefecture.

The weightlifter was apparently staying in the city of Izumisano, Osaka Prefecture before he went missing on Friday last week.

It is reported that Ssekitoleko left a note at his hotel saying that he wanted to work in Japan as life in his  home country, Uganda was difficult.

This development has come after officials in Uganda announced that the State Minister of Sports, Hamson Obua was set to travel today to Japan in search of Ssekitoleko.

The minister of Foreign Affairs, Okello Oryem yesterday first held a meeting with the Japanese Ambassador to Uganda, Fukuzawa Hidemoto at Foreign Affairs Ministry in Kampala where they discussed the matter.

Speaking to the press after the meeting, Oryem revealed that they had resolved that the State Minister of Sports, Hamson Obua will travel today to Japan in search of the missing athlete.

“ The Minister for Sports, Hon Hamson Obua will travel to Japan tommorow ( Tuesday) and we have discussed this matter with him and other government officials and will be taking extra measures to ensure that this matter or this act is not repeated,” he said.

“We are working closely in Uganda with the police to investigate, and we have already discussed with the Inspector General of Police ( IGP). We will give all available information to the Japanese authorities to trace him and bring him back to Uganda,” Oryem added.

Several Ugandan athletes have gone missing while going for Olympic games in the last decade. It should be recalled that three Ugandan boxers who participated in the 2017 AIBA world championship in Hamburg, Germany refused to return home. The 3 were, David Ayiti, Geoffrey Kakeeto, and Muzamiru Kakande.

The most famous one is of 7 under 19 cricketers who disappeared after world cup qualifiers in Canada  in 2009.

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