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High Court Suspends Ankole Districts Football Tournament Following Controversies That Rocked The Event

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Bushenyi District coaches giving instructions during the controversial game 750x496 1

By Muhwezi Allan

All scheduled games for the ongoing Ankole Districts Football Tournament have been postponed by the High Court in Mbarara following controversies that rocked the event.

Citing a request by the Bushenyi District Football Team, Deputy Registrar Zulaika Nanteza on Monday issued an interim order postponing the tournament’s scheduled quarterfinal matches expected this week.

They submitted a petition contesting some of the organising committee’s choices, including one that eliminated their team from the tournament by awarding rivals Sheema District three points and three goals.

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Deputy Registrar Nanteeza ruled on Monday night in her order:

Until the hearing and decision on the main motion for a temporary injunction, “an interim order is issued prohibiting the respondents or anyone deriving authority from or any other person from continuing to play any other matches in the Ankole Districts Football Tournament 2023.”

The competition has been postponed as of Monday’s order until the court hears the main injunction application in the middle of August.

After organisers of the Ankole Districts Football Tournament from Abomugisha Sports Ventures cancelled a game in which their team was leading by the 77th minute and ordered it to be replayed, the Bushenyi District Football Team Organising Committee led by Alternate Team Manager Apollo Lee Kakonge, member Richard Twesigye, and Media Officer Zadock Amanyisa took the matter to court.

Additionally, the organisers rejected attempts by FUFA regional officials to intercede in the situation and refused to abide by the Federation of Uganda Football Association’s (FUFA) regulations under article 25 (3) of the FUFA competition rules (2021) on replaying abandoned games. Additionally, the organisers disregarded the match’s contentious referee’s report.

Bushenyi leaders claim that certain organisers, such as Ronald Alonso, who doubles as the team manager for competing districts like Sheema, have a conflict of interest that prevents fair competition.

After Bushenyi, which has the largest fan base in this event, defeated Mitooma District 2: 0 in the opening match, the 2023 edition of the Ankole Districts Football event got underway in late June.

Later, when some of the competing teams began willfully breaking the rules with the claimed tacit permission of organizers, the competition became contentious. With the claimed tacit consent of the organizing body, participant teams began willfully breaking the regulations.

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