World Netball orders suspension of UNF leaders
World Netball (WN) president Liz Nicholl has instructed the Uganda Netball Federation (UNF) to get its house in order or risk being banned from the sport.
In a letter dated November 2, 2023, and addressed to the acting president of the federation Brig. Gen Falvia Byekwaso, Nicholl stated the reasons why Uganda has to move in haste to get things sorted.
"In line one with World Netball articles of association, a member is required to hold the exclusive rights to govern netball in the country. As this is not the case with the UNF, the WN board has the right to suspend the Member from membership of the Company pending consideration of the matter by the Full Members."
The netball governing body has chosen leniency and handed UNF a lifeline but has taken steps to suspend Sarah Babirye and her executive members.
These include Richard Ojuku (2nd vice president), Harriet Apolot (3rd vice president), Ronald Mudhasi (elected representative eastern region), Bashir Kwerebera (elected representative western region), Rosette Kaala (elected representative Kampala region), Robert Kibira (elected executive representative central region) Denis Mpoza (appointed executive member Kampala region), Hannifa Kabacwa (appointed executive member Western region).
The final executive member Saidia Loice unfortunately passed away in 2022.
WN has requested the officials to step down immediately with no compensation for the loss of office and a normalization committee is established by WN to instruct the UNF which will remain in place until such a time fair and democratic elections take place.
UNF acting president, Brig. Flavia Byekwaso, confirmed steps are being taken to put in place a normalisation committee as soon as possible. This committee's role is to expedite the process of Uganda regaining its license.
"This committee would be made up of new people, none of them members of the previous executive. It would have someone from world Netball to come in and supervise them and run activities most especially with organising elections," explained Byekwaso.
The National Council of Sports is not expected to partake in the selection of this committee but will of course be on hand to support the process.
Attempts to contact the ousted leaders and some of the suspended members were futile but the general sentiments amongst the supporters of the sport is relief.