Parliament to Investigate National Council of Sports

The Speaker of Parliament, Anita Among has named a select committee of seven members to inquire into the activities of the National Council of Sports. 

The select committee will be chaired by Laura Kanushu, the National Female PWDs MP. Other members are Bukooli Central MP, Solomon Silwany, Bukomansimbi South MP Geofrey Kayemba Solo, Bunya South MP Isabirye Iddi, Mwenge South MP Donald Katalihwa, Nebbi Woman MP Agnes Acibu and Namayingo Woman MP Margaret Makokha. 

The decision to form a committee followed a heated debate on a statement by the Minister of State for Privatization, Evelyn Anite in which she reported that the Ministry of Finance has so far released 17.61 billion Shillings out of the appropriated 38 billion to the sports sub-sector in the current financial year.

Anite said that out of the 17.61 billion, a total of 6.3 billion Shillings has been released to the National Council of Sports-NCS for federations.

Mathias Mpuuga, the Leader of the Opposition said that there was a need for the Finance Ministry to present before parliament the extent of appropriation, cash ceilings, and the releases made so far. Among then tasked Finance Ministry to present a comprehensive report in two weeks’ time.

Speaker Among also noted that there were inconsistencies in figures presented to parliament in regard to appropriations by Parliament and releases to the sports sub-sector. She said that there are inconsistencies in money given to different sports federations and other departments of government. 

Bugiri Municipality MP, Asuman Basalirwa moved a motion for parliament to have a select committee to investigate the utilization of sports funds by the National Council of Sports.

Basalirwa said that different sports federations continue to be provided different amounts of money for their activities without clear criteria.

Speaker Among also questioned the criteria used to give sports federations money, noting that the ring-fencing of funds in the sector has not been respected. She said that some federations were given money during the second quarter of the current financial year 2022/2023 more than they are supposed to receive and this has caused a problem.

“We really need to take an action in this institution so that we know where the money goes. We budgeted for 38 billion and there is a release of 6.3 billion and we don’t know how it was distributed,” said Among.

Among said that the select committee should be able to ascertain how much money has been released, and spent, and the activities on which the Council has spent. 

Nabbanja said that even with the institution of a select committee, she will go ahead and cause a forensic into the operations of NCS. 

Peter Ogwang, the Minister of State for Sports also supported the audit. 

The National Council of Sports (NCS) is established, under The NCS Act, of 1964, to among other things; develop, promote and control sports activities in Uganda on behalf of the Government, under the Ministry of Education and Sports.

The Council coordinates all sports activities in the country, in conjunction with National Sports Associations/Federations.

Some of the sports federations in Uganda that benefit from funding through the National Council of Sports are the Federation of Uganda Football Associations (FUFA), Uganda Cricket Association (UCA), Federation of Uganda Basketball Associations (FUBA), Uganda Boxing Federation (UBF), Federation of Motor Sports Associations of Uganda (FMU) and others.

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